One of a Kind
The Chinese town of Suzhou is now home to a wall unlike any other.
According to a newly published story by 3D Printing Media Network, Chinese construction company Winsun has finished building a 3D-printed wall in Suzhou which, at more than 500 meters (1,640 feet) long, is now the world’s largest 3D-printed structure of any kind.
The wall is a river revetment, which is a type of sloping wall designed to protect a shoreline from erosion by absorbing the energy of the water’s current.
The structures can be vital to preserving coastal habitats, but the excavation and foundation laying required by the traditional means of constructing them can lead to polluted waterways and other environmental issues.
By 3D printing its revetment, though, Winsun was able to follow the natural contour of the Suzhou Creek, according to 3D Printing Media Network, which put far less stress on the ecosystem.
Compared to traditional building techniques, 3D printing the revetment was also cheaper, faster, and required less onsite labor, Winsun claimed in a video highlighting the project — all reasons why this first 3D-printed revetment likely won’t be the last.
READ MORE: Winsun completes world’s first, 500 meters long, 3D printed river revetment wall [3D Printing Media Network]
More on 3D printing: Watch a Massive 3D-Printed Building Take Shape