Robots just built the first 40-foot 3D printed bridge ready to install over the canal in Amsterdam next year, according to GE Reports. Built at the Joris Laarman Lab, the MX3D Bridge inspires the possibility of creating structures in midair with local, recycled materials.
The entire project was constructed from a new type of steel with the help of robots (the process is detailed in a story published on PD&D in 2014). Within six months, 10,000 pounds of steel and 700 miles of wire were fused layer by layer to create a structure to uphold humans. Before people can walk on the bridge, the next step is load testing the structure’s support and the installation of smart sensors for the bridge to be observed by a digital twin. This digital twin will offer continuous learning and provide data insights to researchers through a virtual model.
The shape and design of the bridge is full of meandering curves, which provides possibility for future architectural, industrial, maritime and space applications. Currently, the shape of the bridge does not fit building codes, but new ones could be written for use in future spaces.
Filed Under: Infrastructure, Robotics • robotic grippers • end effectors