Friday, 12 Mar, 2010 Offbeat

3D Printer to Make Buildings from Moon Dust


A "mad scientist" by the name Enrico Dini has developed a 3D printing machine that can print structures in solid rock. What is the most impressing is that the engineer hopes his invention will help construct buildings on the moon.

The giant device is the world's first printer able to make entire buildings. Currently the engineer uses sand but in the future he hopes his 3D printer is going to make structures from moon dust.

Dini called his device D-Shape. Using hundreds of needles, the printer sprays a thin layer of sand together with magnesium-based glue. It would be interesting to note that the device has a resolution of 25 dots per inch (dpi). The glue is used to bind the sand into a solid rock that raises layer after layer to eventually form a structure, informs Blueprint Magazine.

Currently the engineer is in talks with La Scuola Normale Superiore, Alta Space, and Norman Foster to bring some changes to the 3D printer so the machine could use moon dust to construct buildings.

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