Authors: Jianchao Zhu, Zhang Tao, Faried Mansour, Wengang Chen
Journal Title: MATEC Web of Conferences
ISSN: 2261-236X (Online)
Publisher: EDP Sciences
The 3D printing technology is the engine key of the third industrial revolution, after introduction of the automation in the eighteenth century and the concept of mass production in early of twentieth century. 3D printing technology now offers the magic solution to balance both the benefits, and overcome the major associated problem with the previous concept which was the need of repetition. The 3D printing technology has two main critical success factors: the printing machine and the printing material (ink).
This paper focusses on cementitious-based materials and the ability to utilize the technology in the construction industry. The research took a qualitative approach based on previous literature reviews as well as in-house research results carried out by the authors’ employer Research and Development Center. The paper summarizes the approach towards to an appropriate mix design which can achieve the requirement of the printing process, and overcome the current constraints which are hindering the wide application of 3D print in construction industry. The authors believe that the research topic and result will have great impact on pushing the construction industry forward towards achieving the UAE Government’s strategy and target to achieve twenty-five percent (25%) of the buildings in Dubai by the year of 2030 relying on the 3D printing methodology. The research also concluded that even though the technology is adding a great value to the construction industry, it must be remembered that the technology is still in its infancy, and further research is required to achieve even higher strength printing materials that would be workable in multi-story buildings without the need of additional steel reinforcement.

Photo: Large-sized building 3D printer (credits: Jianchao Zhu, Zhang Tao, Faried Mansour, Wengang Chen)

Photo: Process of printing wall member used cement-based 3D printing materials (credits: Jianchao Zhu, Zhang Tao, Faried Mansour, Wengang Chen)

© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 ( 
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