Rael San Fratello prints amazing 3D mud structures as prototypes for affordable housing of the future

October 24, 2019 by  
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Led by architects Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello, design studio Rael San Fratello has become well-known for creating innovative and sustainable designs, but now the studio is truly breaking ground when it comes to 3D printing . As part of its Emerging Objects series, the design team has created four solid mud structures. Built by a low-cost, portable 3D robot, the four buildings were all printed using soil and wood sourced on site in Colorado’s expansive Valle de San Luis. The team chose Colorado’s San Luis Valley as the site for their series due to its rich history of Ancestral Pueblo and the Indo-Hispano cultures. Referring to the traditional building practices of these cultures, which predominately included using earthen materials to create sturdy housing, Rael San Fratello has managed to create four 3D-printed prototypes: Hearth, Beacon, Lookout and Kiln, that explore the various techniques of mud construction . Related: BigDelta machine 3D-prints durable, affordable houses from dirt The project, called Mud Frontiers, began by researching the typical earthen items that have been made from the clay harvested from the area. They then collaborated with 3D ceramic print company 3D Potter to create a small, portable robot called Potterbot XLS-1, which was built to print the mud creations on site. The first design, Hearth was built using a thin wall of mud reinforced with rot-resistant juniper wood. This structure has a tiny fireplace on the interior that burns the wood as well. The second design, Beacon was designed to research just how thin the mud walls could be by stacking various coils of mudwork. In this structure, light illuminates through the indentations along the walls, serving as a “beacon” of light. The third design, Lookout, was comprised of a network of undulating mud coils that are layers to form a staircase, creating a structure that is strong enough to withstand substantial weight. Additionally, this structure was built with cross sections of mud piping that can be used to create a system of natural air circulation through various openings. The final prototype, Kiln, included a culmination of the anterior designs, but adds a kiln that uses locally-sourced clay fired with juniper wood to create earthen ware items. Using the various traditional techniques helped designers determine that mud could indeed be a viable solution for providing more affordable construction options in the future. Especially as urban and rural area designers and architects look for sustainable materials to build resilient structures. “What we learned was really how accessible, robust and powerful it was to print large scale structures so quickly using the soil just beneath our feet,” Rael told Dezeen. “We discovered work flows for printing, material mixture processes, structural applications and theories about new and old ways of living and designing for the future using humankind’s most humble material.” + Rael San Fratello + Emerging Objects Via Dezeen Photography by Rael San Fratello

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Rael San Fratello prints amazing 3D mud structures as prototypes for affordable housing of the future

The sustainability movement confronts its ‘lean in’ moment

September 25, 2017 by  
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It’s time to think more about diversity and social inclusions, from the inside out.

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The sustainability movement confronts its ‘lean in’ moment

Seen at COP21: The Paris climate talks in pictures

December 10, 2015 by  
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Take a tour inside the Blue Zone at the United Nations COP21 climate change talks, then see the street scenes in Paris.

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Seen at COP21: The Paris climate talks in pictures

Cultivating Havana: An Organic Farming And Urban Garden Revolution

September 24, 2015 by  
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In the United States, we have taken for granted that we’ll always have plentiful food at affordable prices. For many years, food has only cost us around 10% of our income. However, according to a National Geographic article, Inside the Looming Food…

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Cultivating Havana: An Organic Farming And Urban Garden Revolution

INFOGRAPHIC: Why the shipping container revolution became popular

March 31, 2015 by  
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Cargotecture is one of our favorite topics on Inhabitat and it should be no wonder why—building with shipping containers can be an affordable way to provide high-quality housing. Inside Portable Accommodation , a company that specializes in portable buildings, has also caught on to the booming shipping container revolution in architecture. In celebration of cargotecture, the Gloucestershire company put together an infographic comprising facts about shipping container architecture , great cargotecture examples from around the world, as well as tips from experts on building with shipping containers. Read the rest of INFOGRAPHIC: Why the shipping container revolution became popular Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Cargotecture , infographic , Inside portable accommodation , reader submitted content , shipping container architecture , shipping containers

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INFOGRAPHIC: Why the shipping container revolution became popular

France’s oldest tree, alive since Louis IX, hides treehouse chapels within its trunk

March 31, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of France’s oldest tree, alive since Louis IX, hides treehouse chapels within its trunk Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Allouville-Bellefosse , Architecture , Botanical , carved tree , Chêne Chapelle , france , oak chapel , Treehouses

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France’s oldest tree, alive since Louis IX, hides treehouse chapels within its trunk

Scientists Create Complete Organ from Scratch – Inside a Mouse!

September 2, 2014 by  
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Oh, the mighty mouse – the tiny creature on whom humanity’s experiments have saved countless lives, and they’re up to it again. This time, scientists at the University of Edinburgh have managed to grow a fully functional organ inside a mouse, which opens up the possibility that one day we might be able to manufacture compatible organs for transplant from scratch – without the need for human donors. Read the rest of Scientists Create Complete Organ from Scratch – Inside a Mouse! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: artificial , edinburgh , glad , Grow , inside , mouse , organ , thymus , transplant , university

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Scientists Create Complete Organ from Scratch – Inside a Mouse!

Baltimore’s New Bus Shelter Lets Straphangers Lounge Inside Giant Letters

August 11, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Baltimore’s New Bus Shelter Lets Straphangers Lounge Inside Giant Letters Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: baltimore art installation , Baltimore BUS , Baltimore bus shelters , Baltimore bus stops , bus , eco design , green design , green transportation , mmmm , public transportation , sustainable design , typographical architecture

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Baltimore’s New Bus Shelter Lets Straphangers Lounge Inside Giant Letters

Housefish Launches Easy-to-Assemble Lock Seating Made From 100% USA-Sourced Materials

August 11, 2014 by  
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Denver-based design firm Housefish just launched Lock Seating , their newest furniture line made from sustainably harvested wood. Available as a regular height chair or as a counter stool, these easy-to-assemble chairs are crafted with FSC-certified plywood and zero VOC finishes. The chairs ship flat-pack and can be hand-assembled by simply sliding the seat into a locking notch in the back and then securing it in place with four screws. + Housefish The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “green furniture” , flat pack furniture , formaldehyde-free , fsc certified wood , housefish , lock seating , plywood , reader submitted content , sustainably sourced wood , sustainably-sourced materials , USA sourced materials , VOC finishes

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Housefish Launches Easy-to-Assemble Lock Seating Made From 100% USA-Sourced Materials

Why are Toyota, Ford and Honda the ‘best green global brands’?

June 12, 2013 by  
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The latest annual ranking of the global brands with the most environmental appeal is just out. Here's the inside story about who's on top, and why.

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Why are Toyota, Ford and Honda the ‘best green global brands’?

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