Researchers at the University of Nantes in France have just developed a 3D printer that may help solve critical housing needs after disaster strikes.
INNOPrint3D is capable of rapidly printing objects within a 3 x 3 x 3 (meter or 9.84 feet) space, allowing a complete mini-house to be built and sealed within 30 minutes.
The mini-houses, complete with a roof and insulation, could help churn out emergency housing rapidly when people need it most, something that can provide disaster victims a safe space until more permanent housing becomes available.
“You have to imagine that, in a disaster, the robot will be shipped by boat together with raw material containers and the human relief,” Benoit Ferret of team MO2P / Robotics IRCCyN told 3D Print. “There, on demand, according to the desired size, in 20 to 30 minutes, an emergency housing can be realized and used for several months until a more permanent reconstruction can take place.”
While the INNOPrint3D has not been deployed yet post-disaster, the potential to 3D print shelter on-site may one day change disaster response for the better.
In the meantime, the team is now working on building larger buildings with the same amount of speed, which, could not only impact disaster relief in the future but even how construction is ultimately done, especially in the developing world.
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