Emerging Objects, frontrunners in the 3D printing industry, has developed a 3D-printed ceramic “Cool Brick” that uses nothing but water to cool homes in hot, dry climates. This is the first project of its kind, now on exhibit in San Francisco, and it demonstrates technology that could make a radical change to home energy use in arid regions.
The design firm behind this amazing innovation has proven they have an eco-friendly heart by using recycled materials in past projects. With this new development, they have married ancient technology with modern printing capabilities to answer the very serious question of how to reduce cooling costs as global temperatures rise. The 3D-printed ceramic bricks are based on evaporative cooling systems used as far back as 2500 B.C. With only water needed to provide a cooling effect, technology like this could eventually lead to slashing energy costs by reducing the need for expensive air-conditioning units.
Cool Brick is a new kind of passive cooling system that uses only water to cool rooms in hot, dry areas. The printed bricks are porous to absorb water, and they fit together like LEGOs to build a screen. Held together with mortar, the brick lattice forms a cool, protective layer against a wall, keeping it insulated from the heat.
This kind of innovation could go a long way to reducing the reliance on energy in hot, arid regions where air conditioning is impractical and expensive. Cool Bricks have the ability to cool the air without removing humidity as well, making a separate humidifier unnecessary (and thus eliminating the additional energy costs). Emerging Objects already has plans to use 3D printing technology to crank out entire buildings, and with this step forward, one might wonder when they will attempt to print a self-cooling 3D home.
Images via Emerging Objects.