3D printing for buildings has been explored on many fronts. In 2015, the Israeli design team Tridom won honorable mention in NASA’s 3D Printed Habitat Challenge for their ‘Bubble Base’ building, a prototype for future human habitation on Mars. (Read more on that, here.)
Engineer Hussain Nasser Lootah, Director General of the Dubai Municipality, told the Emarat Al Youm newspaper that by 2030, 25 percent of the city’s new buildings will be printed in order to reduce construction costs and shorten delivery schedules. This will especially benefit the affordable housing sector where the combination of automation and new materials will increase efficiency and significantly lower costs.
“3D printing is a disruptive technology,” Sameer Lakhani, Managing Director of Global Capital Partners, told the Khaleej Times. “Currently, the process is still more expensive than conventional building methods; moreover it is in its embryonic stages, being able to accommodate only rudimentary designs. However, within a 10 to 15-year time frame, it appears likely that this form of ‘printing’ will start to replace existing methods of construction.”