A series of concrete casting techniques that once belonged to skilled craftsman have been revived with the aid of large-format 3D printing.
The ‘Sensorial Adaptive Concrete Screen’ was developed by Immensa Technology Labs, a UAE based additive manufacturing (3D printing) specialist, in collaboration with regional construction giant Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC).
The sensor-embedded screen is made from 3D printed formwork produced on Immensa Labs’ BigRep ONE 3D printer.
Ready to be used without additional certification, 3D-printed formwork enables resolutions that cannot be achieved by 3D printing concrete, allowing companies to produce parts on a grand scale.
Fahmi Al-Shawwa, CEO of Immensa Technology Labs, said: “This breakthrough signals the immense potential that 3D-printed formwork offers companies to significantly shorten and simplify their studio to site process.
“It brings proven concrete casting methods back to today’s building sites, renewed for the modern era and offering significant added value.
“This fulfils Immensa’s mission to drive innovation in the 3D printing industry and highlight the unique benefits of this manufacturing method to show how it can benefit companies in the construction sector.”
Aref Boualwan, Consolidated Contractors Company, added: “The age of construction and engineering is dramatically changing – and we are ready at the forefront, working with leading organisations to seize opportunities that will truly transform our industry and society in coming years.
“The sensors in the screen are remarkable - activated by the touch of a hand, allowing effectively any piece of concrete to become a switch. Architects now have direct control of the development of their designs – this functionalisation of a concrete surface is the first of its kind.
“The potential impact of this technology is limitless – and we are truly proud to present these world-first results with Immensa.”
Immensa’s state-of-the-art facility now houses ten 3D printing systems and offers over 30 materials for production.
It is equipped to build and manufacture production quality parts, components and one-off prototypes for customers across a variety of industries using a wide range of advanced technologies including Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), Stereo lithography (SLA), Extrusion (FDM), and Material Jetting.