Shape-Env: Camera-enhanced robotic terrain-shaping for complex 3D concrete printing

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Abstract

Accounting for over 40% of global waste, the construction industry needs innovative approaches to reduce its environmental impact. Excavation soil is currently considered waste and disposed of in landfills, accounting for about five times household waste and being the most significant source by volume. However, 80% of the extracted soil from construction sites is estimated to be uncontaminated and could be reused. In parallel, 3D printing of concrete structures with non-standard geometry is still limited by complicated processes, which are challenging to upscale and be used for on-site construction scenarios. This project proactively explores terrain as a resource for automated construction, specifically using unprocessed soil as a reconfigurable moulding material for on-site 3D printing of geometrically complex concrete elements. To do so, a novel robotic process was developed and tested in a laboratory environment, combining high-precision robotic earthwork and 3D printing aided by camera vision to account for the unpredictable behaviour of soil with unknown composition and properties. The method was tested on a proof-of-concept experiment where concrete shell panels of topological complexity were successfully realised, extending the available design space for large-scale 3DCP with a reconfigurable, sustainable and low-cost approach.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDigital Design Reconsidered : Proceedings of the 41st Conference on Education and Research in Computer Aided Architectural Design in Europe (eCAADe 2023)
EditorsWolfgang Dokonal, Urs Hirschberg, Gabriel Wurzer, Gabriel Wurzer
Volume1
PublisherEducation and research in Computer Aided Architectural Design in Europe
Publication dateSept 2023
Pages539-548
ISBN (Print)9789491207341
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023
Event41st Conference on Education and Research in Computer Aided Architectural Design in Europe, eCAADe 2023 - Graz, Austria
Duration: 20. Sept 202322. Sept 2023

Conference

Conference41st Conference on Education and Research in Computer Aided Architectural Design in Europe, eCAADe 2023
Country/TerritoryAustria
CityGraz
Period20/09/202322/09/2023
SeriesProceedings of the International Conference on Education and Research in Computer Aided Architectural Design in Europe
Volume1
ISSN2684-1843

Keywords

  • Robotic Earthwork
  • Conformal Printing
  • 3D Concrete Printing
  • 3D Scanning

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