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Ceramic building bytes

Building Bytes are ceramic bricks created with a 3D printing machine. Bricks can be stacked or interlocked to create undulating walls, complex arches and domes or columns that are both structural and ornamental. 

Brian Peters, founder of the DesignLabWorkshop, has been working with ceramics and 3D printing for many years. During a six week workshop at the European Ceramic Work Centre, Peters studied the properties of ceramic materials and their potential for use in 3D printing. Peters subsequently devised a liquid ceramic earthenware recipe that can be used with a standard 3D printer that has been adapted by adding a custom extrusion head. Compared to many conventional brick making techniques, this invention potentially offers the opportunity to easily design specialised types of bricks. For example, the ceramics can be interlocked to achieve complex curvatures. Additionally, a brick’s print design can be engineered to lower a brick’s weight or even provide additional strength where required for a particular building application.

Peters has designed four different types of brick:

1. Ribbed bricks for columns and towers
2. Interlocking bricks for domes and arches
3. X-bricks to create undulating surfaces
4. Honeycomb bricks for modular, stackable structures

Each brick takes around 15-20 minutes to print and because the printer is portable it can be brought to site where it acts as a veritable brick factory. Peters believes the technology is not limited to ceramic materials and could also work with concrete mixtures for example, which opens the door to many more design possibilities!

You can read more about Building Bytes and see more photos of Brian Peters’ work here.

Also, be sure to watch this video of the 3D ceramic brick printing process here


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