The bike-loving Dutch have constructed the earth’s first 3D-printed bridge, with cyclists set to be the chief beneficiaries.
The 8m ditch crossing joins two roads in the town of Gamert, south east Holland, and is made from around 800 layers of pre-stressed concrete.
The bridge, which I’m assuming was produced on something a little more significant than the HP Deskjet I have at home, took three months to print and can take a load of up to two tonnes.
In a statement on its website, the Eindhoven University of Technology, which printed the thing, claims that a key advantage of printing concrete is that much less of the stuff is needed than ‘in the conventional technique, in which a mold (formwork) is filled with concrete’.
Handily, the ‘printer deposits only the concrete where it is needed, which decreases the use of cement. This reduces CO2 emissions, as cement production has a very high carbon footprint’.
You can read more about the marvel here.
(N.B. The picture above isn’t the bridge in question. I wasn’t sure of the legality of using the pics available so didn’t use any of them)