China is 3D-Printing Tiny Houses for $5,000 Each

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3D-prints-10-full-sized-houses-in-a-day

With housing relief projects in mind, a Chinese company generates 10 modest prototype homes in a single day using a massive 3D printer and a cement mix as ‘ink.’ They don’t look so bad compared to a cramped NYC studio.

While most of us are still on YouTube trying to figure out how exactly 3D-printing works, China is building some serious stuff with the technology.

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See also: Scientists have created an external membrane using a 3D printer than can keep a heart beating virtually forever.

WinSun, a private Chinese firm, used 3D-printers to build 10 full-sized, single story houses in a single day. The company used four 10m x 6.6m x 150m 3D-printers to spray a mixture of construction waste and recycled cement to build the wall of the homes, layer by layer.

The cheap materials used during the printing process and the lack of manual labour means that each house can be printed for under $5,000, the 3dprinterplans website says.

The company seems to be producing the houses on demand, for anyone who doesn’t mind living in a house made of cement and garbage.

“We can print buildings to any digital design our customers bring us. It’s fast and cheap,” says WinSun chief executive Ma Yihe.

He also hopes his printers can be used to build skyscrapers in the future. At the moment, however, Chinese construction regulations do not allow multi-storey 3D-printed houses, Xinhua says.

Although Chinese construction regulations currently don’t allow multi-story 3D-printed buildings, Mr. Yihe hopes to use the technology to build skyscrapers in the future.

See also: EarthShip – Radically Sustainable Buildings

The homes, which can quickly be assembled on-site and outfitted with plumbing, windows, electrical wiring, and roofs once the concrete aggregate building blocks have been printed in a factory, are geared toward housing-strapped developing nations where traditional brick-and-mortar construction is simply too expensive and too time-consuming. The first 10 Winsum 3D printed homes are currently installed at a Shanghai business park and are being used as offices.

Of course, some may not consider the Winsun homes to be technically 3D printed considering that they’re assembled, piece by piece, after the fact using recycled concrete bricks. Still, this is an amazing bit of green-minded, solution-oriented innovation. Take a glimpse at the technology on full-display in the below video …

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