This Affordable Home Can Be 3D-Printed In Just Five Days

In a ground-breaking effort, a 3D-printed house in Almaty, Kazakhstan, was finished in just five days, demonstrating that these kinds of buildings can be both reasonably priced and robust under seismic and harsh weather conditions. The first 3D-printed home in Central Asia, this home was designed by BM Partners and built with one of COBOD’s BOD2 printers—the same type that powers the biggest data center in Europe.

The construction process involved the COBOD 3D printer extruding a cement-like mixture layer by layer to form the walls. Given Almaty’s strict seismic regulations, the team used a very strong cement mix to ensure the structure could withstand local conditions, including earthquakes up to a magnitude of 7.0 on the Richter scale. “To enhance the building’s structural integrity, BM Partners used a special strong concrete mix with a compression strength of almost 60 MPa (8,500 PSI), substantially exceeding the 7-10 MPa (1,015-1,450 PSI) typical of conventional brick and stone used in Kazakhstan,” explained COBOD.

This advanced mix, comprising locally sourced cement, sand, and gravel, was enhanced with the D.fab admixture, a joint development of COBOD International and Cemex. This allows for customized concrete formulations tailored to regional needs. Given Kazakhstan’s extreme climate, varying from -57 to +49 degrees Celsius (-70.6 to +120 degrees Fahrenheit), the house incorporated expanded polystyrene concrete as insulation for the walls, improving thermal and acoustic performance.

Once the walls were completed, human builders added windows, doors, and other necessary fittings, including furniture. From initial printer setup to final touches, the project took two months. The single-story home covers a floor area of 100 sq m (1,076 sq ft) and features a simple layout with generous glazing and a large living room. It now functions as a showroom to demonstrate the capabilities of 3D-printed construction.

A COBOD representative revealed that the home’s cost was around €20,500 (roughly US$21,800), significantly cheaper than the local average. This project highlights the potential of 3D-printed homes to offer affordable, resilient housing solutions worldwide.

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