To build the house, ICON developed a mobile 3D printer called the Vulcan, which is created to operate in conditions where power isn't reliable and potable water isn't readily available - like rural El Salvador or Haiti.
The company demonstrated its innovation in Austin at SXSW's annual Interactive Festival, constructing their prototype in real time.
These homes aren't part of the "tiny house" movement and you won't see suburbs of these 3D houses popping up across America. "I think if we were printing in plastic we would encounter some issues", explains co-founder of ICON, Jason Ballard. New Story said "as long or longer than standard Concrete Masonry Unit built homes".
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Together, ICON and New Story are 3D printing homes using a cement mixture. ICON isn't just focused on building homes fast, but is aiming to make them extremely affordable as well. "3D printing had been our on radar but it wasn't until we got connected to ICON that we felt it would be a feasible possibility".
New Story explains on its website that a year ago, the technology they needed to create homes quickly and cheaply wasn't available yet.
There are other groups which are working on printing houses. But they are printed in a warehouse, or they look like Yoda huts.
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Since these structures need to be sturdy and hospitable, the companies aren't taking any risks and will be refining the process right up until they take it over to El Salvador. It will reduce labor costs and create minimal waste.
Despite the fact that the hardware utilized as a part of 3D-printing is very exorbitant, notwithstanding, the materials can be cheap.
3D-printing has become more accessible all around the globe, however, the of adoption of any large-scale utilization of 3D-printing technology is still a challenge.
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