KUKA Digital Fabrication
2012-2013, KUKA Robotic Arm & Foam
MIT Medial Lab
The goal of the Print-in-Place Construction project is to improve upon the limitations of modern construction methods through additive manufacturing techniques. The developed approach uses a robotic arm to additively manufacture large structures through an in-situ 3D printing approach. This novel technique is termed Print-in-Place Construction and it utilizes a fast curing mold structure that is printed on-site. By printing the mold instead of directly extruding concrete, any castable structural material be used inside the molds to produce a building. In additional, the mold can be left in place for thermal insulation purposes, similar to insulated concrete form technology, or robotically milled to create high-resolution formwork. Print-in-Place construction holds potential to save material, energy cost, time, money, and labor while increasing safety and architectural possibilities. By putting the power of design and construction directly into an end users control, allowing imagined structures to be constructed at the touch of a button. Buildings of any shape, created in hours, not weeks, and all at a cost lower than traditional methods.
This research was sponsored by the NSF EAGER award: Bio-Beams: FGM Digital Design & Fabrication.