The rise of 3D printing in construction (and why you should take note)
The integration of 3D printing use in construction has slowly been increasing, with architects and contractors beginning to build the first 3D residential structures.
According to our sister publication Construction Global, 3D printing could revolutionize the construction industry as well as affect housing affordability due to a less expensive process.
How is 3D printing done?
The 3D printing process is completed using large printers that use a special concrete and composite mixture that is thicker than regular concrete. This allows the mixture to be self-supporting as it sets. As such, 3D printed components do not have the same design constraints that may hinder current construction methods.
Curved concrete structures created through 3D printing can also be hollow, requiring less material and creating a space for building services inside the structural elements.
Winsun, a Chinese construction company, has claimed to have built 10 3D constructed houses in one day at a cost of just $5,000 per house. Earlier this year, Winsun took its 3D printing construction beyond single houses, building a five-story apartment building and an 11,840-square-foot villa.
Winston used a large 3D printer that fabricates the building parts in large pieces at the company's facility. Winston then assembled the pieces on-site adding steel reinforcements and insulation.
Winsun says the 3D process saves between 30 and 60 percent of construction waste, can reduce production times by 50 to 70 percent and reduce labor costs by 50 to 80 percent, according to an article from CNET.
“Contour crafting technology has great potential for automating the construction of whole structures as well as sub-components,” said USC professor Behrokh Khoshnevis in an interview with Business Insider.
RELATED TOPIC: Amazon launches online 3D printing store
Khoshnevis hopes to develop a gigantic 3D printer that could print an entire house in a single run, including the structure and all its conduits.
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Ivy.ai’s new chatbot streamlines resources and policies
Ivy.ai, a creator of AI chatbots for higher education, is offering a chatbot that helps institutions streamline name, image, and likeness policies for athletic programmes.
This solution will allow athletic departments to dramatically reduce inbound inquiries while answering inquiries related to compliance, financial aid impact, how-to documents, and best practice training videos.
It will allow institutions to condense information in a way that is easily accessible and eliminates the need for student-athletes to read complicated manuals. Institutions can also engage with student-athletes via a real-time feedback loop to see which topics truly matter and what needs further clarification. This allows administrators to be proactive and provide a competitive edge in recruiting.
Helping institutions connect their students with information
“Athletic departments at colleges and universities are overwhelmed by the challenges posed by the name, image and likeness legislation,” said Mary Frances Coryell, Vice President of Strategic Alliances and Partnership.
“Ivy.ai is uniquely positioned in the market to help institutions connect their student-athletes with policies and information related to NIL such as state laws, restrictions and relevant contacts. Our chatbot can digest all relevant policy information and provide answers to student-athletes at any time on any device. We expect the NIL market to move quickly, so student-athletes deserve the answers on their terms, rather than exclusively during work hours.”
Primary use cases for the chatbot include:
- Answering commonly asked questions related to name, image and likeness
- Communicate policies such as state laws, restrictions and compliance regulations
- Provide contact information for various advisors and agencies
- Connect training materials for athletes to improve their branding
- Engage in two-way reactive and proactive communication to keep policies student-centric
Back in March 2020, the company offered schools a free COVID-19 Response System, including a customisable COVID-19 Response Bot, a human-to-human live chat system and an SMS Text platform. These services are offered completely free of charge.
"The customisable COVID-19 Response Bot will help schools connect their students with important information, such as the school's operational status, where to go for treatment, and what to do to help reduce the risk of spreading the virus. We already added that information to all of our clients' AI chatbots, and we found that in many cases students needed additional support. That's why we're including our human-to-human Live Chat system in this offer. The SMS Text platform can be used to drive awareness to this communications channel for your students." said Mark McNasby, CEO of Ivy.ai.