Lucy Wang

Swarm of Tiny 'Minibuilder' Robots Can 3D Print Giant Buildings On-Site

by , 06/29/14



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The Minibuilders comprise three robots, each programmed to carry out different functions for the three separate stages of the building process: Foundation, Walls and Ceilings, and Reinforcement. First, the Foundation Robot 3D prints the footprint of the structure based on a predefined path that it follows with a sensor. Once the foundation is in place, the smaller Grip Robot clamps onto the foundation layers and extends the structure higher with 3D printed walls and ceilings with window and door cutouts. Finally, the Vacuum Robot finishes the job and reinforces the newly built shell with additional layers.

Related: World’s First 3D-Printed House is Being Built In Amsterdam

While the three different robot types are not designed to work together all at once, mobile robots belonging to the same group can work concurrently to speed up the building process. In other words, multiple Grip Robots can be used at the same time to build the walls and ceilings. The IAAC researchers have also implemented a 1:1 prototype 3D printed by the Minibuilders that is on display at the Design Museum of Barcelona.

+ Minibuilders

Images via IAAC

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  1. RelayerM31 June 29, 2014 at 9:31 pm

    Builder bots are for sure the future. Just pick the spot. They’ll add the sewer, electrical, gas, fiber optic high speed Internet/cable TV, telephone. Next they’ll put in the roads and foundations. Lastly they’ll layer on the housing. Done! Give it a decade or so and the bot town builders will be hard at it. Need something condemned and demolished? No problem. The crusher bots have you covered.

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