Girls in STEM

Update: Spotlight School Success

Update: Spotlight School Success

SUCCESS! Since electing Liberty Elementary School as our Spotlight School, we have come to adore the Liberty family more and more each day.  T

News and Insight

Search articles, videos and updates on 3D Printing and its growing presence in our world

Girls in STEM

WATCH: Ms. Houck's TEACHER FEATURE

WATCH: Ms. Houck's TEACHER FEATURE

This week, we bring you a short video on a STEM'tastic educator! Scroll down to WATCH this educator doing what she does best - teachi

Videos

Cool Vid: 3D Printing for K-12 Education

Cool Vid: 3D Printing for K-12 Education

Watching super cool EDUCATIONAL videos from across the web is one of our favorite pastimes! Join us in learning more about 3D printing in the clas

Science and Math

'Tis the Season for STEM

'Tis the Season for STEM

'Tis the season for GINGERBREAD and working the delicious treat into your family - and CLASSROOM - fun. Last week, as students across the

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3D Printing Opportunities: Will Large 3D Printers Eventually Design Houses?

By Staff Writter

3D Printing Opportunities: Will Large 3D Printers Eventually Design Houses?

Engineering

When talking about 3D printing opportunities in the world, we seldom hear about how 3D printers work on a larger scale. We're used to thinking about desktop 3D printers permeating the market while printing everything from toys to mechanical parts. And while 3D printers can print miniaturized houses right down to startling detail, you're probably not aware that some experimental large-scale printers are actually printing full-size homes. One large printer in China now has the capability of printing ten prefab homes in a mere 24 hours.

As amazing as this sounds, you might think that there's some limitations here when you see the actual size of the homes. In that regard, you have to place China's housing philosophy within the right context. With their overpopulation problem, many people live in small prefab homes like this in order to save land space. But, to them, it's perfectly acceptable, and they're also very comfortable.

The fact that China can print out ten of them within a day is astonishing in the evolution of technology. Considering the printer is larger than the houses it prints, it's also a surefire sign 3D printers will soon be made here that can start creating houses and even buildings. However, will we take it on when there's been 200 years of building in America by manual labor?

Will We Use 3D Printing to Build Homes?

America would likely never warm to the small prefab houses China is printing. This isn't to say large printers won't be developed (possibly further in China) to create much bigger homes in perhaps a week's time rather than 24 hours. Even a skyscraper could be built someday, maybe in a month's time.

This might be controversial considering construction workers are a major part of the economy in building our nation's infrastructure. It's all the more reason 3D printing should be working in concert with existing careers in order to create more opportunities rather than eliminate jobs. They could easily work alongside construction workers in the building of homes to create sections impossible to build by hand.

When it comes to 3D printing opportunities, let's always remember that 3D printing should be creating new careers. The building of large-scale projects will only help bring new engineering feats to protect and reinforce buildings against nature's fury, such as earthquakes.