Published : 2013-02-04 18:48
Updated : 2013-02-04 18:48
THE HAGUE (AFP) ― A Dutch architect has designed a house “with no beginning or end” to be built using the world’s largest 3-D printer, harnessing technology that may one day be used to print houses on the moon.
Janjaap Ruijssenaars, 39, of Universe Architecture in Amsterdam, wants to print a building resembling a giant mobius strip ― a continuous loop with one side ― with around 1,100 square meters of floor space using the massive D-Shape printer.
The printer, designed by Italian Enrico Dini, can print up to almost a six-metre-by-six-meter square, using a computer to add layers 5-10 mm thick.
Ruijssenaars says the building could serve as a home or a museum and would have parts usually made from a concrete-like material printed using broken up rocks and an emulsion binding, while steel and glass would provide the facade.
“It’s our ambition to have the first printed house, this printer has made art or objects for sea defences, but this is the first time to build something that can be lived in,” he told AFP.
Ruijssenaars said the plan was not initially to print the building but the hi-tech medium turned out to be the most appropriate. “We started to ask the question if a building can be like the landscape, in order to make a building that would not harm the landscape, or at least learn from the landscape,” he said.
“We analysed that the essence of landscape is that it has no beginning or ending, so it’s continuous, not only the fact the world is round but also water goes into land, valleys into mountains, it’s always continuous.”
The Mobius-strip shaped result bears a striking resemblance to the art of another Dutchman, 20th-century designer and illustrator M C Escher.
“In this design he’s definitely been an inspiration, I would say he’s the king of Mobius strips in drawing,” Ruijssenaars said.
When trying to make a small model of the building, Ruijssenaars realised that whatever material you use, from paper to lead, “you have to make a strip and then bend it in order to make this Mobius strip.”