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Materials Innovations Transforming 3D Printing

3D Printing to Transform the Facade of Building & Construction Sector
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Published: 27 Sep 2017

Building & Construction sector has been dominated by same materials and technologies for ages with hardly any disruptive innovations with regards to material technologies. The current construction techniques lead to a lot of material wastage, takes a lot of time to build as well as creates a lot of pollution. Moreover, these technologies are not viable to build complex and intricate structures. 3D printing has the ability to address a number of issues of the sector such as inability to create structures with precision, material wastage, requirement of more labor etc. The potential of 3D printing for this sector is immense as 3D printing has the ability to create complex and intricate structures. It also enables structures to be created with much less material and labor. Thus, the material and labor cost are minimal resulting in considerable savings. It also reduces carbon dioxide emissions, thus environment friendly.3D Printing also allows the buildings to be printed from any remote location. 3D printing in the building & construction sector is still in the nascent stage as the current 3D printers are not well suited to building large landscape models or buildings. Thus, the development of large scale 3D printers is the key focus presently. Novel technologies in 3D printing are also entering the sector that could revolutionise the entire building & construction industry like BAAM/LSAM. The disruptive potential of 3D printing in the building & construction sector is huge especially in the context of other emerging technologies such as robotics and digital prefabrication. Although some jobs will be done by robots very efficiently but the sector will continue to require skilled engineers and architects as it is extremely difficult to make a robot creative! The advancements in the development of 3D printing materials for the construction industry is still focused on concrete in most of the cases. The research efforts for the development of new materials for 3D printing for the building sector are facing serious hindrances in terms of adoption due to regulation issues. This research service (RS) depicts the current landscape and the new trends in 3D printing and corresponding materials in the building & construction sector. It deeply illustrates the following: • the potential of 3D printing in the building & construction sector • emerging materials and noteworthy innovations, • regional technology development and adoption trends, • patent analysis, • funding scenario • a detailed technology adoption roadmap • and a specific focus towards Big Area Additive Manufacturing (BAAM), key examples and the impact of BAAM in the sector

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