Here at 3D Rapid Print, one of the fastest growing 3D Printing companies in the Thames Valley, we like to keep abreast of the latest innovations in 3D printing.

Circa January 2019, US Army mechanical engineer Megan Kreiger collaborated with the US Army Corps of Engineers Engineer Research and Development Centre (ERDC) to build a modern version of a Bailey bridge at Camp Pendleton in Southern California. It measured 32ft. long and was made of reinforced concrete. (The Bailey bridge is a portable and pre-fabricated truss bridge developed in 1940/1941 by the British for military use in World War II.)

Kreiger discovered 3D printing during her studies of material science and engineering at Michigan Technological University, and ended up running its 3D printing laboratory. She joined the ERDC in February 2015 and was a co-developer on a new type of concrete for use in 3D printed construction, which a patent was filed for in 2016. As of March 2019, the legal status of the patent is still pending.

Circa August 2017, the Automated Construction of Expeditionary Structures (ACES) project of the ERDC’s Construction Engineering Research Laboratory of Champagne, Illinois 3D printed a 512ft.2 army barracks structure that was nicknamed the B-hut. Circa August 2018, Kreiger managed the ACES project team making two halves of another army barracks structure in 24 hours of continuous 3D printing. This was done in collaboration with self-proclaimed “one of the largest and most influential architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban planning firms in the worldSkidmore, Owings & Merrill of Chicago, Illinois, as well as Marines from the I Marine Expeditionary Force. It was also demonstrated live to journalists and local TV stations.

Historical developments in 3D printing technology and construction materials have allowed increasing numbers of 3D printed metal and concrete bridges to be installed around the world. Circa October 2017, the Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands collaborated with construction company Bam Infra of Gouda, South Holland to build a 3D printed concrete pedestrian and bicycle bridge. In October 2018, self-proclaimed “develops groundbreaking robotic additive manufacturing technology” company MX3D of Amsterdam displayed a 3D printed metal bridge during the Dutch Design Week of 2018.

3D printing is an amazing tool. It can grow your small business or start a mini revolution in an industry. Explore what it can do for you when you contact us today.

Disclaimer: Featured image of “Pontoon bridge built by US Army Engineering unit at Washington Barracks, Washington, D.C. LOC hec.10902” is in the public domain in its country of origin and other countries and areas where the copyright term is the author’s life plus 70 years or less. It is in the public domain in the United States because it was published (or registered with the U.S. Copyright Office) before January 1st, 1924. It is nonetheless attributed to the Harris & Ewing collection at the Library of Congress. As far as the Library of Congress is concerned, there are no known copyright restrictions on the use of the image.