The first ever 3D-printed house in the southern hemisphere has been built in a Melbourne manufacturing warehouse in just three days. The structure's elements were printed in the first two days and assembled on day three while the structure meets the Australia and New Zealand building codes.
The house was built by Australian 3D printing building and construction company Luyten in December, using highly robust and eco-friendly 3D printable concrete.
The structure, called the Heptapod, costs less than 70 per cent of traditional building methods, supporting the fast-growing tiny houses movement.
"We are absolutely ecstatic with the 3D printing of our first house," Luyten 3D cofounder and CEO Ahmed Mahil said.
"It is a fine example of the type of structure that can be built using our innovative 3D printing technology and will provide people with the ability to see and touch a 3D-printed home in person before they order one."
Since the business launched in 2020, it has partnered with the University of New South Wales to build structures and base camps on the moon and on other planets, including Mars.
Some of the 3D homes on order will be used for affordable housing options in regional areas of the country, as well as schools and accommodation.
The 3D printable concrete results in 82.5 megapascal (MPa) compressive strength after 28 days, four times stronger than the 20 MPa residential building code requires.
Mr Mahil said the printed elements were ready to handle and be moved within only five hours of being printed.
“This is the great thing about our special concrete mix, it cures quickly and delivers results that supersede what is currently available at four times less cost."
Mr Mahil said the 3D printing technology allows construction projects, which traditionally take months or years to complete, be finished in a matter of days.
Furthermore, Mr Mahil said the technology reduces 60% of construction waste, 70% of production time, and 80% of labour costs.
“In addition, the technology is proven to increase construction site efficiency with 60% guaranteed costs savings, 300 to 500 times shorter execution times, and an 80% total reduction in monetary expenses without formwork in concrete construction,” he said.
3D printing homes is eco-friendly too — Mr Mahil said Luyten 3D’s technology employs up to 40% less carbon dioxide emissions through propriety mixes that reduce use of cement, and the robotic systems reduce construction site and logistics carbon dioxide footprints by 50% to 70%.
According to data by CoreLogic, Australian housing values grew 22.1 per cent last year - growth not seen since the 1980s - but it had since slowed across most capital cities.
"It is clear that most markets have moved through a peak rate of growth," CoreLogic's research director Tim Lawless said.
"We saw most of the capitals moved through a peak rate of growth around March last year."
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