Man Uses 3D Printer To Construct Concrete Castle

A Minnesota man is quite literally king of his own castle after developing a specialized 3D printer to construct a miniature building straight out of a movie in his own backyard.

Andrey Rudenko, a contractor with a background in engineering, is responsible for building the concrete castle. The result of two years worth of work, the castle was constructed with a specialized 3D printer that Rudenko designed himself. As IFLScience notes, there was no machine commercially available to extrude concrete in the manner necessary to create Rudenko’s castle.

Unfortunately, the castle only measures 3 meters by 5 meters, a bit small for liveable habitation. Rudenko’s work, however, proves that aesthetically pleasing buildings can be fashioned by way of 3D printing, although challenges still exist in perfecting the technology. As CNET relates, one of the hardest parts of the construction was perfecting a concrete mix that would work well with a 3D printer.

“Although cement has existed for thousands of years,” Rudenko said, “it hasn’t been common to use cement mixes for low-speed precise extrusion. It took a lot of research and experimenting to come up with the proper mix. So the recipe is my own with common materials and some additives.”

The idea that 3D printing could be used to construct housing is hardly new. As The Inquisitr has previously reported, developments in printing technology are viewed as a crucial step in a possible mission to Mars, during which astronauts could fashion shelter or tools from available resources when they arrive. Here on Earth, 3D printing has been proposed as a way to quickly fashion needed habitation in poverty or disaster-stricken areas.

The walls of Rudenko’s castle took six months to finish. As with more traditional forms of concrete construction, it was reinforced as needed. The extruded concrete that forms the castle measured 3 cm wide and 1 cm thick, though Rudenko’s 3D printer is able to accommodate different dimensions.

This my friends is the future. Concrete 3D Printer Used To Build Castle…in Minnesota – Geek

— Mr X™ (@themancalledmrx) September 4, 2014

The next step for Rudenko is to scale up operations, attempting to construct a medium-sized home. His printer can be programmed to leave spaces for wiring and plumbing, add design flourishes, and even add a frame for a staircase. He is currently seeking others experienced in architecture, engineering, design, or construction to aid in the project, helping to make sure that his 3D printed castle is just the beginning.

[Image via]