The 3D printed house

An entire house from a 3D printer

3D printing has become an integral part of architecture. At first there were presentation models, followed by living spaces, and most recently the question was: Who will build the first house using 3D printing technology – and when? Now the guessing game has come to an end: The house has been printed and is located at voxeljet's service center in Friedberg near Augsburg. 

Just how did voxeljet manage to win this race, when the whole world is working on turning this vision into reality? "We 'only' printed the house" says a modest Dr. Ingo Ederer, "the idea and design came from Austrian architect, visionary and cosmopolitan Peter Ebner." 

And of course there is a lot of creativity in the design that was created by the architect, who works in Munich and teaches in the US and England, together with his talented students at 3M futureLAB by UCLA + HUD, the University of California,  Los Angeles and the Huddersfield University. The house is a completely print-ready unit including toilet, kitchenette, and furniture – all from a 3D Printer.

And even though this is not a house with the normal dimensions, but rather a living space reduced to the bare minimum with just a few square meters and a height of approximately three meters, it nevertheless begs the question: What kind of 3D printers can generate sand molds in these dimensions. The term 3D printer is a great understatement when we talk of voxeljet's large-format machines.

"The VX4000, which generated the two sand molds for the house, one piece at a time, using the layer building method, is one of the world's largest industrial facilities of this kind with a space requirement of 25 x 12 meters and a height of 4.5 meters. The "printer" is actually a small stand-alone factory that produces components at dimensions of up to eight cubic meters using a fully automated process", says Dr. Ederer. "Architectural projects such as this house would be impossible to create using 3D printing technology without such printing systems." 

The VX4000 required a total of 60 hours to print the two house halves. Including everything, the printing costs for the spectacular project totaled approximately EUR 60,000. The small house weighs approximately two tonnes. And: It meets all of the requirements imposed by the architect. Peter Ebner is very enthusiastic about the technical execution and the stability of the printing. 

 

Partner:  

3M futureLAB by UCLA + HUD, www.futurelabstudio.org

SCE, www.sce.de

Florian Holzherr, www.architekturfoto.net

 Technical data

1. SAND MOLD2. SAND MOLD 
Total size 2,943 x 1,782 x 900 mm  Total size 2,932 x 1,773 x 900 mm
Weight 2,111 kgWeight 1,540 kg
Individual pieces1Individual pieces1
Material SandMaterialSand
Layer thickness  0.3 mmLayer thickness 0.3 mm
Lead time  5, 10, 21 daysLead time 5, 10, 21 days
Build time 65 hoursBuild time 65 hours