3D printing aiming higher

The walls of the largest 3D concrete printed building in Europe are expected to be printed in around 140 hours using 100% recyclable mortar.

This equates to four square metres of building per hour using a Danish-made Cobod printer by German company PERI 3D Construction for construction of a 9-metre-high data centre building in the city of Heidelberg.

Cobod founder and general manager, Henrik Lund-Nielsen said the two key benefits of 3D printing for construct are “speed of execution and design freedom”. And while the Cobod 3D printing system – the BOD2 robot – cannot reach past nine metres in height, the company revealed it is working on new technology to allow for printing higher in the future.

Heidelberg Materials is supplying around 450 tons of its i.tech 3D printing mortar which is 100% recyclable and contains a binder with a carbon footprint 55% lower than Portland cement.

Started on 31 March and expected to be complete in July, the project measures 49.37 metres long by 36.8 metres wide and 9.1 metres high.

The structure is the latest and largest 3D-printed building using a Cobod printer, many of which have printed two and three-storey buildings in Belgium, Germany, the US and Canada, India and Africa.

Denmark-based Cobod has some well-known shareholders in CEMEX, Holcim, and General Electric, along with India’s L&T Construction, Japan’s JGC, Siam Cement from Thailand, Dar Al Arkan in Saudi Arabia, and Orascom from Egypt.

About the author

Desi Corbett

Desi is the Editor of Concrete in Australia and at the helm of our magazine for 8 years. She was behind the Institute's weekly news bulletins from 2016-2021 and is now writing our focused news items. Desi has been an engineering news and features journalist/editor across all disciplines since 2013 - part of a 30-year career writing for a wide range of industries.