Building Towards the Future

 In News & Insights

Bigger. Better. Faster. Stronger. There will always be a demand for the latest and greatest in building technology. At Neri Architects, we’re all about setting the standard rather than having to meet it. That’s why we’re staying on top of the latest developments in construction technology which better help our clients see their their design vision become a reality. This week, we’re profiling two cutting-edge building technologies which are changing the game in architecture and construction.

Robot Builders

158927982_ca8166d674_zAutonomous building technology is, in a nutshell, being able to tell robots what needs to be built and relying on them as much as possible to get the job done. We can learn a lot about autonomous building technology by looking at ants (yes, ants). Ants have very limited eyesight. This forces them to rely on pheromone trails and behavioral indicators to interact with each other. The big mystery scientists face is understanding how these creatures which are nearly blind and have very rudimentary methods of communication are able to work together to build such intricate structures. By studying the movement of ants, researchers have laid the groundwork for autonomous building technology. Their goal is to program robot builders to work together (like ants) to create structures based on a set of parameters like “three bedroom, two bath with a 13’ x 15 master”. The technology is far from perfect but has been quickly growing to meet industry demand.

3D Printing

maxresdefault454631Pictures and videos of 3D printed toys and statues have been circulating around on the internet over the last few years. However, 3D printers are more than just a fad. They’re not just the fun and futuristic toys we see online. Scientists are using 3D printing to build organs and limbs. In 2013, scientists even managed to print a hamburger (and, by all reports, it wasn’t half bad). But is it possible to print an entire building? Well, kind of.

3D printing is great for building things in layers. Similar to how paper is printed one line at a time, 3D printers take a digital model of whatever you’re trying to build and uses a medium (such as plastic or concrete) to replicate the model, layer by layer. This means that while it is possible to build certain structural components of a building, there are technological limitations which prevent some structures to be built entirely via 3D printing. Of course, we’re a long way away from being able to print buildings with functioning plumbing and electricity. However, we can still print a large number of building components using 3D printers. This technology may also provide a huge benefit to the nation’s homeless population as it is a fast and affordable way to put a roof over one’s head.

Take a look at these 3D printed buildings…

Neri Architects is dedicated to keeping a finger on the pulse of the latest building technologies. We’re always looking to provide better and faster building solutions for our clients. Want to learn more about what Neri is doing to provide the highest-quality architecture and design projects in Chicago? Contact us today!

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