Amsterdam’s getting its first 3D printed bridge – and it’s a smart one, too. Robo-manufacturers MX3D are teaming up with partners including Autodesk, The Alan Turing Institute and the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions (AMS) to 3D print a 12-metre-long, sensor-equipped, stainless-steel pedestrian bridge, which will cross the Oudezijds Achterburgwal in Amsterdam city centre. The bridge is expected to be in place next year, but curious viewers can already take a peek when it is presented at Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven.
Complex, graceful structures
Based at the NDSM Wharf in Amsterdam Noord, MX3D equip industrial robots with purpose-built tools and develop the software that controls them, an approach which, according to the company, allows them to 3D print “strong, complex and graceful” metal structures, including multi-axis projects such as the bridge.
The bridge will be equipped with a network of sensors to collect data, measuring factors such as strain, vibration, surrounding air quality and temperature. This data is then applied to a digital model of the bridge, providing valuable insights for future designs of 3D printed metal structures.
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