A pioneering 3D-printed house just popped up in Xian, China - and Chinese company ZhuoDa “built” the two-story villa in less than three hours. Made up of six 3D-printed modules, the house was assembled like LEGO bricks before a live audience who were then invited to explore the interior. The modular fireproof home can withstand a magnitude-9 earthquake and is made from a special construction material the company is keeping secret.
The company completed approximately 90 percent of the construction in an off-site factory before shipping the modular pieces to the installation site. This efficient and timesaving process dramatically reduces construction costs to just 2,500 – 3,000 yuan ($400 – $480) per square meter. According to An Yongliang, the developing engineer at Zhuoda, the 3D-printed villa only takes about 10 days to produce from initial construction to final assembly, while it typically takes half a year to build a traditional villa.
The house is capable of withstanding high-magnitude earthquakes because the modules, each weighing over 100 kilograms per square meter, bear weight independently. The steel-framed structure home can also be filled with heat-insulating materials. The Zhuoda Group has filed over 22 patents on their technology and is keeping their top-secret material under wraps. However, the company’s vice president Tan BuYong has revealed that the new material is sourced from industrial and agricultural waste, is fireproof and waterproof, and is free from harmful substances such as formaldehyde, ammonia, and radon.
After the structural framework was 3D-printed, the company applied decorative sheet textures to each module before final assembly. Homeowners will be able to choose from a variety of decorative textures, such as jade, marble, wood, and granite. Herbs can even be embedded into the walls of the house for ‘built-in aromatherapy.’ The buildings can withstand wear for at least 150 years.
Images via Xinhua