You’ve been hearing us mention it lately and it’s regularly mentioned in the industry trades, but what is it? Quite simply defined as CON – Construction … TECH – Technology! It is the “wave of the future” and it will be featured up close and in depth at METALCON 2019! This new technology hub on the show floor is being brought to you by United States Steel Corporation.Continue reading
Unlock the key to the future of construction projects by understanding the latest in Construction Technology (CONTECH). METALCON 2019 will feature a brand new CONTECH innovative and interactive hub on the show floor, showcasing some of the hottest products from a variety of different technology companies. According to an article posted by Autodesk, here are the five major construction technology trends to watch in 2019:Continue reading
Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin on the Moon and an image of Buzz Aldrin’s bootprint from the Apollo 11 mission. Image Credit: NASA
“One giant leap for mankind … ” This past weekend, the world celebrated 50 years since the the first man stepped foot on the moon. In a BBC News report, “NASA marked the anniversary by streaming footage of the launch online, giving a new generation a chance to see the historic moment that was watched by half a billion people 50 years ago. At the moment the spacecraft landed, Apollo 11 commander Neil Armstrong said: “Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.”Continue reading
Thanks to cutting-edge image technology, the daunting task of rebuilding a near 900 year old building will be possible. According to an article published last week in Futurism, “Thanks to the meticulous work of Vassar art historian Andrew Tallon, every exquisite detail and mysterious clue to the building’s 13th-century construction was recorded in a digital archive in 2015 using laser imaging. These records have revolutionized our understanding of how the spectacular building was built — and could provide a template for how Paris could rebuild.”
3D printed home by ICON
What if you could download and print a home in 24 hours at half the cost? ICON, an Austin, Texas based 3-D printer construction startup company is doing just that! Mentioned briefly in our previous blog post, ICON has partnered with New Story and People Helping People of El Salvador, two charitable organizations focused on helping some of the world’s poorest people in replacing the sprawling slums with 3D printed homes. ICON has successfully printed its first home and is poised to built an entire community at $4,000 per home with an estimated 12-24 hours to print each home. Executive Director for People Helping People, Lisselot Tronconis, says, “the appeal of 3D printing isn’t aesthetics, but that it can cut the cost, time and labor required to build homes.” Continue reading
Photo Credit: METALCON/AMIE on display at METALCON 2016
We continue to explore how 3D printing has the potential to “remodel the construction industry.” As featured in Monday’s blog post, Amsterdam is poised to install the first 3D printed bridge made entirely from steel in 2019. Structures built with 3D printing are popping up in locations such as Dubai, China, Italy, Russia and El Salvador. It is also a subject that is appearing with more regularity in construction and technology trades and in mainstream news sources. As reported by the Wall Street Journal just this month, “3-D printing is scaling up. All over the world, an impressive diversity of people and organizations, ranging from startups and hobbyists to construction and engineering firms, are successfully prototyping 3-D-printed buildings.” Continue reading
Future technology is about to mix with 17th century old architecture as Amsterdam is preparing to add a 3D-printed steel bridge to its 1,200 bridges throughout its canals.
Dutch 3D-printing start-up MX3D has finalized their design plans to install the world’s first 3D-printed fully functional stainless steel bridge over a historic canal in Amsterdam next year. Continue reading
When Granite School District in West Valley City, Utah was looking to build a new elementary school dedicated to science, technology, engineering and math, its goal was to design more than just an ordinary education facility. Continue reading
This thing is crazy.
METALCON has a damn good name. It also had some damn good demos at the Baltimore Convention Center this week.
The event was a major gathering for construction pros looking for new ideas. The exhibit hall had lots of tools, and demos about the latest ways to build. To kick off the conference, however, Roderick Jackson challenged attendees to think bigger.
“We literally build buildings the same way we’ve built them for centuries,” said Jackson, who heads up the Building Envelope Systems Research Group at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.
Instead of the latest tools, Jackson brought a whole house to the convention. Called the Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy (AMIE), it’s a prototype of a home that shares energy between the house itself and a hybrid car.
Being a DOE project, one problem it’s solving is the fact that buildings use lots of energy. AMIE points toward energy usage that doesn’t have to rely completely on a grid. Power from solar panels and the electric vehicle batteries flows back and forth through a wireless system developed at national lab. The vehicle has a natural gas generator that produces power for the home.
There’s also lots of new approaches in the construction. The building was entirely 3D printed (on the world’s largest 3D printer). That makes a zero-waste construction process. It’s made of polymer, but Jackson said it’s designed to get folks thinking about what materials available to them can be used. Inside, the wall cavity was reduced from 8 inches to 1 inch to make room for next-generation insulation. The one-room design is simple, complete with Murphy bed. But that’s also a canvas to create.
The speed of the project also marked a big change, process-wise. Jackson said the project was completed in nine months. That’s fast for government, but the level of change points to government’s strengths in taking on the risk.
“The role of government is to take on the risk the private sector wouldn’t take on,” he said. “Now industry can take what we did and move it forward.”
Corporates were already involved in the prototype phase. Jackson’s team got partners like Alcoa, Clayton Homes, GE Appliances, Tru-Design and NanoPore. They were excited about doing something that wasn’t only new, but also big.
“The biggest thing that I learned from this is people don’t get excited about incremental,” he said. Rather, partners and others really gathered around an idea “when you start throwing stuff out there that’s moonshot-type ideas.”
3D printing, construction and the Millennials, yes we’ve grouped all three together for a reason. We’ve touched a bit on how 3D printing will change the construction industry for the better. Yes I said it for the better; I look at it as a huge opportunity for both manufacturers and the people out in the field. Now how does the millennial generation fit into the equation? Continue reading
I know in the past I’ve stated that the metal construction industry lacks innovation and most people in the industry have agreed with me while the comfortable ones have lauded me. What does that tell you? From my perspective it seems that many of the past innovators of the industry have become comfortable or complacent. You know what happens when that behavior sets in right? Well, I think they are about to get that much Continue reading
Change in the world of construction is certainly happening at a faster rate than we may think. How will this example of technology impact the metal construction world? Well, I will say that if it can do this with bricklaying, then it will certainly Continue reading
About a month ago I posted something about 3D printing for the metal construction industry and it looks like these mad scientists are back at it again. Looks as if they are starting to print Continue reading
Yes going to try to do another one today and in the spirit of July 4th let’s talk about our friend “ME.” Me was born back in 2013 and has grown up quickly to travel the world. Take a look at the photos through the years Continue reading
I’ve been thinking about some new features for the blog and will begin using some of the ideas I have come with in the next week. I’d also like to open this up to anyone that Continue reading
I realized that our blog has officially hit 100 posts so we’ve decided we should celebrate the fact that we have reached that impressive number! We always welcome contributions to the Continue reading
Yesterday was day 1 of the Western Roofing Expo and we talked to quite a few people yesterday. One conversation really struck me more than any other I had yesterday. I was speaking with a gentleman from San Diego who is a Continue reading
I figured I would continue the discussion from the previous post this morning involving 3D Construction Printing. Watch the short video on the world’s first 3D-printed house. Furthering on my argument from this morning the narrator of the video states
That’s right a metal 3-D printed bicycle frame has been created in the UK. Renishaw is the only UK manufacturer of metal-based additive manufacturing machines and they have teamed up with Empire Cycles another British company. Empire designed the bike so that it would be a lighter and stronger Continue reading