Dutch architect unveils 3D printer to make 'endless' house
A Dutch architect Wednesday unveiled a unique 3D printer with which he aims to construct a large building "without beginning or end" shaped like an infinite loop.
"It's just like a normal printer," architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars told AFP as he presented the tool he hopes to use to build what he has dubbed the "Landscape House".
"But instead of putting ink onto paper, we are putting a liquid onto sand which solidifies wherever the liquid has been spread."
Ruijssenaars, of Universe Architecture in Amsterdam, aims to print the Mobius strip-shaped building with around 1,100 square metres (12,000 square feet) of floor space using the massive D-Shape printer.
Designed by Italian Enrico Dini, the printer can print up to almost a six-metre-by-six-metre square (20-foot-by-20-foot), using a computer to help build up fine layers of 5-10 mm (a quarter to half an inch) thick.
The machine is almost two metres long and has been set up in a warehouse in Amsterdam, where the final tests are being carried out before pressing ahead with the start of building.
"The ambition was to make a building that has an infinite structure, like planet Earth," said Ruijssenaars.
"Planet Earth doesn't have a beginning or an ending and we were looking for a shape that has the same quality," he added.
"It didn't become a circle but it became a very complex, Mobius strip which is a well-known mathematics figure which just has one side."
The ambitious project was first unveiled in 2013, and the team has been in touch with various partners hoping to be able to start construction "within the next few years."
It is hoped the building, which will also include more traditional design elements, can be used as a space for exhibitions or sculptures.
The initial plan had not been to print the building, but it turned out that a 3D printer was the most practical way of making his house without beginning or end.
It will not be the world's first 3D building, however, as such projects have been undertaken in China and Dubai, although using a different method.
© 2016 AFP