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Stainless steel bridge is 3D printed in 6 months

Back in 2015, MX3D announced its plans to create a fully functional, 3D printed metal bridge. Now, after 6 months of printing by 4 industrial robots, the span of bridge is finally finished. The bridge is scheduled to be installed in 2019, where it will span across Oudezijds Achterburgwal, one of the oldest and most famous canals of Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

The technology of using multi-axis robots allows for 3D printing strong, complex and graceful structures out of metal, and this project is used to showcase its potential.

The bridge measures 12.5 metres (41 feet) in length and 6.3 metres (20.7 feet) in width. The design includes 4,500 kilograms (9,920 pounds) of stainless steel, and is made of over 1,100 kilometres (683.5 miles) of wire.

The next step in the project is performing structural tests on the finalised bridge, scheduled for this summer. Later this year, the rest of the bridge, including the swirls, is printed, before the bridge is revealed in October. In 2019, the bridge will be installed in Amsterdam.

The bridge is designed by Joris Laarman Lab, Arup is the lead structural engineer, ArcelorMittal provides the metallurgical expertise, Autodesk assists with their knowledge on digital production tools, Heijmans is the construction expert, Lenovo supports with computational hardware, ABB is the robotics specialist, Air Liquide & Oerlikon know everything about welding and lastly, Plymovent protects the air the employees breathe whilst AMS and TU Delft do invaluable research. The municipality of Amsterdam is the first customer of the collaborative bridge building department.

Photos: MX3D

Comments

  1. Charlie McMillan says:

    A wonderful accomplishment and opens up a world of future possibilities but I can’t help thinking of the artisans who might have hand crafted this in a fraction of the time, and I’m guessing less $. But I’m all for the effort, first steps should be cautious and take time.