3D printing concrete using selective cement activation method

3D printing concrete has a lot of potential. 3D printing creates little to no waste, and it can create any shape. Researchers from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have been studying 3D printing concrete in complex forms with pipe-like structure, using the so-called selective cement activation method. The result of their research can be seen at Material Xperience (click here for a free entry ticket)!

The object exhibited at Material Xperience was additively manufactured (AM) layer by layer using a selective binding technique, the so-called selective cement activation method. The solid was built by spreading layers of dry particles (a mix of cement and aggregate), which were locally bonded by an aqueous binder. In this case, expanded glass was used as aggregate, but the researchers also experimented with wood chips as aggregate.

This object was produced to demonstrate the high geometric freedom in design and high resolution which can be achieved by this AM method. The structure consists of pipes, which can withstand forces op to 50 newtons per square millimetre, just as stable as conventionally cast concrete.

The dimension of the object is about (L x W x H) 570 mm x 300 mm x 390 mm with a layer height of 2 mm. You can see it at the Architecture pavilion at Material Xperience, 13-15 March in Rotterdam Ahoy.

Photos: Daniel Weger / Klaudius Henke