Columns are interesting free-standing objects in which a designer, architect, or engineer can play with texture and structure on a small scale. It still needs a certain solid construction to stand, and it is small enough to play with the texture of the surface and structure. The columns in this blog post are all made of concrete and thanks to developments in 3D printing and the material itself, one is able to really play with the material. Here are some nice examples of 3D printed concrete columns.
One of the universities with an impressive list of 3D printing and AM innovations is ETH Zurich. For the installation Concrete Choreography, students of the Master of Advanced Studies in Digital Fabrication and Architecture created nine, individually designed, 2.7m tall columns. Each column is concrete 3D printed at full height in 2.5 hours. What is special about these columns is the lack of a cast. The material is just solid enough to dry with the need for support material.
Another example from ETH Zurich of a 3D printed column is the Future Tree, the latest research of Gramazio Kohler Research. It is a bit misleading since the column is actually cast into a 3D printed eggshell-like formwork. As the website explains, this method is a novel fabrication process for the creation of non-standard, reinforced concrete structures.
To make a good 3D printed column in concrete, the material needs to bind quickly enough so that it can dry. Thai cement maker Siam Cement Group shows with these 3D printed columns that they have mixed the right powder materials and fibers allowing them to be 3D printed into new shapes.
The last 3D printed concrete column is from French 3D printing company XtreeE. The column, designed by Marc Dalibard architect and EZCT Architecture & Design Research (Philippe Morel, Felix Agid), is actually cast from a mold (by Fehr Architectural).
Each of Tessa’s weekly picks is a curated group of 3D printed designs, based on the week’s chosen theme. If you would like to offer a theme for Tessa, or if you have your own 3D printed weekly picks you would like to see featured, please let us know by commenting below. Subscribe to the newsletter to get the latest weekly picks every week in your mailbox.