April 1, 2014

Back in 2011, University of Southern California Professor Behrokh Khoshnevis said new technology will soon allow massive 3D printers to build entire multi-level houses in under a day.

A group of 3D printed houses, 200 m2 each, recently appears in Shanghai, China. These building were created entirely out of concrete using a gigantic 3D printer, and each costs only 30,000 RMB ($4,800).

The company behind these 3D printed building, Shanghai WinSun Decoration Design Engineering Co, said it has for years been working on developing the system and its materials. The company owns 77 national patents of construction materials, such as glass fiber reinforced gypsum and special glass fiber reinforced cement.

While Hobbyist models of 3D printers are currently available for only a few hundred dollars and lets users feed plastics and polymers into a machine, the company takes this technology to a bigger level. Using concrete, instead of plastic, WinSun wants to revolutionize the way homes and other structures are built.

WinSun's 150(L) x 10(W) x 6.6(H) m gigantic 3D printer is capable of printing entire building within hours. The 'ink' it used is based on high-grade cement and glass fiber. Like traditional 3D printers, the system carefully spills out those materials layer by layer, consistently building upward.

Using computer and 3D modeling software, the designs of the building can also take into account additions like insulation materials, plumbing, electrical lining and windows, which can then be easily outfitted once the rest of the structure is solid and standing.

In addition, it is very impressive that the printing material is recycled construction waste, industrial waste and tailings. WinSun plans to build 100 recycling factories in the country, one in every 300km, to collect and transform the waste into materials for 3D printing through special handling, processing and separation technology. "There will not be any waste from the construction of new buildings." said WinSun CEO Ma YiHe. WinSun expects 3D printing will save construction companies up to 50% on the cost.

WinSun hopes their 3D printer and technology could offer "affordable and dignified housing" for the impoverished.


Posted in 3D Printing Applications

Maybe you also like:


haeduus wrote at 11/10/2014 12:03:34 AM:

I'm from west africa, how could i buy one of this big 3D printers?

Ricardo massri wrote at 10/12/2014 12:43:19 AM:

Quiero ver casas diferentes a estos precios y queremos comprar varias,como tenemos que hacer,estamos en el pais de uruguay,como es el baño y la cocina

Cementason wrote at 6/25/2014 5:38:31 PM:

Hey, China again steals technology!! If only they could perfect and make better the technologies they steal the world would forgive?

Dennis Guest, New Mexico wrote at 6/19/2014 3:05:01 AM:

I'd really like to know the cost of the machine itself. A person could build a solar powered home anywhere really. Maybe cost would over-run the practical use. Maybe not , But then again, construction unions would cause so much trouble that legal costs on top of principal costs might make this just a pipe dream for here in the USA. Still , maybe import of a couple of the 3D units wouldn't be such a bad idea.. I'm sure the US already has something like this. That being said, (rambling) How much for the Printer???? I want one or two.

PMan wrote at 5/7/2014 8:31:12 AM:

Hey! Made in China will explode!!

Builder Revolution!!! wrote at 5/4/2014 11:09:11 PM:

Who will be the first to order one house?? is the shipping possible?? can we pay with credit card?? I will assemble the pieces and finish them at my place with some friends!!!

Neok wrote at 4/30/2014 9:21:35 PM:

The site is http://www.yhbm.com/ but you'll need google translate ;-)

Cee Hook wrote at 4/21/2014 11:05:50 PM:

200 m2 = 2152 square feet...these do not look that big

kerry hickman wrote at 4/21/2014 10:32:06 PM:

very cool wish i could work w y'all

Cee Hook wrote at 4/21/2014 9:31:42 PM:

Actually, I like them...yes they are primitive and yes it still requires humans to put the parts together...but it is a good start and if anyone with any creativity wants to design ways to join them together, it is still a cheap way to build a house for less...using recycled materials.

willem@lensselink.com wrote at 4/18/2014 8:22:04 AM:

Like to see this with my own eyes. Who invite me to this company?? See so many possibilities Looking forwards to hear something from YOU??

ficken! wrote at 4/17/2014 7:52:11 PM:


Anja wrote at 4/16/2014 10:50:47 AM:

@Aldo: See above in the article.

Aldo wrote at 4/16/2014 10:34:52 AM:

Anyone knows the website or contacts of this company?

Grace wrote at 4/15/2014 11:17:33 AM:

I feel like 3D printing is the opportunity to create amazing looking items that otherwise would be extremely expensive/impossible to make. Concrete box with a window one side? hmmm....

Dan wrote at 4/14/2014 5:33:08 AM:

Looks a bit like 2D printing to me

Prohumani wrote at 4/13/2014 9:43:00 AM:

THIS IS THE FKN FUTURE!! god bless china, they do what jacque fresco in the usa was not allowed to! FREEDOM AND WISDOM for building cheap and good and effective housing for all mankind! thanks to the future and printer! wow!

w1bmw wrote at 4/9/2014 6:03:50 PM:

When your alternative is a thatch hut or a bunch of scrap lumber tacked together, I bet these look pretty damn stylish.

adamkl wrote at 4/9/2014 1:37:57 AM:

guys, stop hating on the chinese~ my guess is that they don't have a convenient and cheap way of putting in windows, cuz they dont have a removable support material . so they jsut have big glass walls/doors on the ends and point em south for natural lighting. and they just tailored the shape to the best structurally sound shape that fit a off-the-shelf set of glass panels/doors for cost efficiency. as a pilot project, I'd call this 100% successful. the chinese are not doing a bad job at all. ( i mean.. no one can really say that till they've made a 150x10x6.6m concrete+steelmesh printer.) even if its not an original idea, at least they did it. so that's somtin. I'm quite certain that they too realize the need to make it printable on site, but proof of working large scale concept takes precedence over portability if you're doing a multi-phase development project. so that difficulties can be identified and resolved in later iterations without being gimped by additional constraint factors. because HOW they make it portable is more flexible than how to make it print well. similar projects all around (in smaller scale) are basically doing the same thing, and are not very portable either.

Tom Weidner wrote at 4/8/2014 6:26:52 PM:

Did anybody found the website of this company ??

Doc Raven wrote at 4/5/2014 3:48:24 PM:

I applaud their ingenuity. Whether the building is printed “On Site” or assembled from elements printed elsewhere, or even if there is human intervention during the process to apply support material, the fact remains that the components are “printed” using a process similar to other “additive” manufacturing processes. In 1992 I watched a demonstration of 3D printing at the Univ. of Texas in Austin. Twenty years later, we are the beneficiaries of this technology. I have no doubt that this is real, perhaps altered a little for a media story, but without pioneers in this industry, innovation and ideas never come to fruition.

SIEGFRIED HOLLE wrote at 4/5/2014 1:23:51 PM:


jo wrote at 4/5/2014 5:17:39 AM:

IS it made by paper? If there is a rain....will the house broken ?

Chyeah Boiii wrote at 4/3/2014 11:42:13 PM:

This is walking guys, running skipping and jumping comes later! :p

Perry Engel (aka cerberus333) wrote at 4/2/2014 8:12:03 PM:

This is a really important proof of concept! The issues of "beauty" are really not significant. the whole point of 3d printing buildings is that the tool path files can be adjusted to make many changes. Features like window and door openings, shelving and built in counters, benches, cabinets, bathroom showerstalls to name a few offhand. additionally paths for conduit, plumbing etc can also be designed into the process. finally if nothing else the build can be the skeleton of a structure that siding, interior sheetrock etc can be applied to. as to the issue of the built components being moved, I say what is the problem with that?

James Gardiner wrote at 4/2/2014 12:05:01 PM:

It is interesting that only two of the buildings look like they have been 3D printed with the method shown in the detailed construction shots. The texture of the walks seem to run horizontally for tge rest of the low res shots. Perhaps these ones were just printed as tall panels which were assembled. Would be great to see some good quality images. If they have only printed one of the buildings it would still be a big step forward from Contour Crafting (UCL) and Concrete Printing (Loughborough). Good on them if this is real and not a staged shoot!

anon wrote at 4/2/2014 9:37:21 AM:

is this connected to Behrokh? or is a chinese company copying the idea and doing it poorly?

Jeremy wrote at 4/2/2014 2:23:48 AM:

These particular houses my not look that appealing, but think of it as a proof of concept. What will be coming soon will be mind blowing. For more info, check out this video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehnzfGP6sq4

Carole wrote at 4/2/2014 12:41:57 AM:

I sell houses and they aren't that appealing, I agree with others. But it really does seem like it could open up affordable and quality housing possibilities. (Maybe if they added color to the concrete it would help)

Anja wrote at 4/1/2014 11:47:51 PM:

Dear all, this is real.

Rodrick wrote at 4/1/2014 11:05:05 PM:

Pretty sure this is a joke right? Where are your sources?

Anonymous wrote at 4/1/2014 8:39:47 PM:

Wonder if the buildings are up to code... That being said,I'm hopeful that this is akin to the future of housing is now as what the Model T is to cars today.(or something like that)

michaelc wrote at 4/1/2014 7:08:28 PM:

Another observation: It looks as though there is a layer of fiberglass cloth laid between each layer, which implies it has to be put there manually. This is not a Printer in the sense that it needs workers to add additional materials to the build during the construction of the envelope.

michaelc wrote at 4/1/2014 7:03:21 PM:

it looks as if these are not print-in-place houses, but rather print the parts, and then move them into position. While this is an improvement over traditional techniques, it is still not nearly as good as printing a house in its final position.

Matthew wrote at 4/1/2014 5:46:34 PM:

The second to the last picture, Does not look correct. Why are the forms butted against a roof? The "style" could be improved but If you are poor it could be a great option. But shipping pre fab concrete does change cost too.

Feign wrote at 4/1/2014 3:50:46 PM:

I don't think this is an April Fools joke... But I agree with John Doe, these weren't printed in place, though this is still impressive turn around for prefab concrete forms. They could have been slightly more original with the shape of the houses, given the flexibility of their medium, though.

David wrote at 4/1/2014 2:36:12 PM:

It looks very ugly, but it is a good start. I do believe that the process and the architecture can greatly improve. I guess nothing is stopping them from building quick and cheap very nice buildings.

John doe wrote at 4/1/2014 2:21:44 PM:

From what I see it seems some manual intervention was done to move the printed parts. Hope there is no more cheats from Chinese people on this subject.

anonymous wrote at 4/1/2014 2:04:43 PM:

april fools?

Leave a comment:

Your Name:



Subscribe us to

3ders.org Feeds 3ders.org twitter 3ders.org facebook   

About 3Ders.org

3Ders.org provides the latest news about 3D printing technology and 3D printers. We are now three years old and have around 1.5 million unique visitors per month.