Housed within the College of Environmental Design at UC Berkeley, is the printFARM . To which, is the official lab or print facility for Architectural Research and Materials. This is where researchers, led by Associate Professor of Architecture, Ronald Rael, are exploring ways to use the ErectorBot large format 3D printer as a means to fabricate buildings.
For the past six months, researchers in the lab have been exploring bio-plastic materials. Bio-plastic materials are materials, that are derived from corn and hemp qualities. These are just a few examples being considered for large scale printing possibilities.
The machine is a large format 3D printer with a 8’x4’x4’ft build area called a “Erectorbot 844Lx”. The experiments being conducted have a wide range. Everything from exploring adaptations of gcode to create textures and patterns, hybrid models, structural stiffness, translucency, to the flexibility through mezostructured materials.
The large format 3D printer opens up a range of possibilities for creating working full-scale objects, structures and systems that are much more difficult to achieve with smaller 3D printers. Thus the stationary printing bed, multi extruder setups, larger nozzles and layer heights all allow for larger parts to be printed faster without sacrificing precision or detail. Using the ErectorBot large format 3D printer system in this fashion presents an unlimited range of construction materials and process discovery.
New ways to the future with an ErectorBot Large format 3D printer!