Last October we profiled Enrico “the man who builds houses” Dini, who has created a gigantic 3D printer called the D-Shape. With this monster of a printer, he has visions of revolutionizing the construction process on a massive scale. This story is not about Dino, but you should watch the Discovery Channel special on him.
Now Dutch architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars of Universe Architecture has designed a house with the D-Shape in mind. His plan is to 3D print the frame on the D-Shape in 6 x 9 meter sections that lock together, and then improve the structural integrity by filling in the rest with concrete and fiberglass. We’re still a long ways off before someone can print an entire building with a 3D printer.
But 3D printing the house is not the only thing which makes this project unique. The house, which he calls the “Landscape House,” is designed as “endless.” Endless in this case does not mean that it goes on forever, but means that if you begin walking through it in one direction, you will eventually end up where you began. Wouldn’t a running track configuration accomplish the same thing? It would, but not in the cool way that Landscape House does. If you are familiar with the work of M. C. Escher and his famous etchings depicting impossible three dimensional situations (which someone printed in 3D), you’ll get a better idea of what Ruijssenaars is trying to accomplish. It’s more of an optical illusion than a circle.
Mathematician and artist Rinus Roelofs teamed up with Ruijssenaars in creating the design, as part of Europan, an architectural design competition.
It’s quite something to see what architects are coming up with now that they have such great 3D modeling tools, plus 3D printers on their way that can help to more easily produce the structure they dream up.