Brick that Snaps Together Like LEGOs
While the 3D printing revolution continues to rewrite the rules of construction, what’s beginning to emerge are some seriously mind-bending structural possibilities using the technology. Bricks printed using ceramic powder and epoxy can take nearly any physical form, including forms designed for maximum structural strength and design flexibility with minimum weight. How many more ho-hum cookie-cutter strip malls should we expect to see built in ten years from an industry that revolutionizes its building blocks in previously unimagined and economical ways?
The answer is: fewer. With apologies to anybody who actually likes those cookie-cutter designs, let me say that it’s about time.
These bricks come to us from the Sabin Design Lab. From the great blog Inhabitat.com:
The lightweight interlocking PolyBricks were developed by the Sabin Design Lab in collaboration with Cornell and Jenny Sabin Studio. It is the first mortarless 3D-printed wall assembly that maximizes structural strength and allows for the production of complex curved structures. PolyBricks feature tapered dovetail joints that have unique positions within a whole. The algorithms that interconnect the components allow aggregative systems to use the force of gravity to lock the bricks in place and strengthen the structures. The team claims that this technique can ensure the construction of entire buildings without generating waste.
Research on the PolyBricks project is based on experimenting with the production of non-standard components and curvilinear forms found in nature. Cost-effective and lightweight, PolyBricks seem to be superior to conventional solid bricks. The project pioneers the development of ceramic as a viable building material, which went from manual and mechanical to fully digital production.