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Preliminary Research and Documentation

Design a 3D printer that can use concrete to build structures like walls and pathways.


3D printing technology is fast replacing traditional and conventional methods in manufacturing and architecture industries. Industries are now researching on using different materials to use this technology to 3D print complex objects and structures. Concrete, as a print material is currently used by various construction organizations to build simple structures.


3D concrete printing technology has developed quite a lot in the last couple of years. Nowdays (October, 2021), it's possible to print multi story houses, whereas plumbing and electrical works are taking place while printing. 

There are two main types of concrete printing used in construction: gantry systems and robotic arm systems.

Named for its hanging-like structure, a gantry system involves a secure-hanging printer head that pivots from an x, y, and z-axis. Imagine the classic arcade claw game, where the claw points downwards and moves along the roof to the desired location.

A robotic arm concrete 3D printer has a moveable printer head like gantry printers, however, instead of moving around a defined space, or grid, it’s a crane-like structure that contains 6 axes. They still move between the x, y, and z planes, but they are afforded more flexibility and reach when doing so.

And here are some videos of commercially available printers:

Currently, the biggest problems in concrete printing are that the printed element looks like printed and corners cannot be sharp. Also, there are some parts that require manual work while printing, like windows, insulation filling, outlets, reinforcement. These are things that top printing companies are working on.

Why this is Important

3D printing is faster and more accurate. 3D printing or additive manufacturing results in lower wastage of raw material used in manufacturing. Researchers are studying the best mix of concrete and other additives  to 3D print objects like walls, complex structures and pathways. 3D printing concrete will automate building construction, reduce manpower and build structures that are  as accurate as their design.

What this Project needs to move forward

We need these skills to move this project forward:

  • 3D Modeler - To create 3D models
  • 3D Print Specialists - People who have had hands-on experience in 3D printing including assembling the printer for the initial print run, collaborate, advise and build extruders based on print material.
  • Physics/Chemistry Majors - Work with the team to research on concrete and additive materials and contribute to converting them to 3D structures.
  • Architect/Structural Engineers - Work with the team to design and build different parts of the printer and extruder.


Highlights of working on this project

  • Collaborate with talented people from different domains and areas of study and expertise
  • Build a strong team with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds
  • Learn project management, project reporting, delivery cycles
  • Work in a highly energized environment that focuses on high quality product development
  • Discover, learn, innovate, and invent new ways for preserving and growing marine life
  • Have fun in a super charged team of professionals students, collaborators, sponsors

For Contributors

  • Remuneration - This is not a sponsored project. You will get credits, honorable mentions and a Certificate of Contribution from Ocean Builders.
  • Learning - This project offers you opportunities to learn about this concept/topic/technology. You will get to collaborate and work with industry experts and professionals who will share their experiences and guide you along with their best practices.
  • Culture - Work with people from different backgrounds, cultures, nationalities and get exposure to working on cross-functional and virtual teams.
  • Get Your Hands Dirty - Roll up your sleeves and get practical on this project. Experience the joy of designing or building a machine/system/device that will be used by millions of people worldwide. If you are not co-located, video conference with your team and collaborate.
  • Build and Grow your Professional Network - Collaborate on this project, make friends, and grow your professional network.

For Sponsors

  • Top Talent - Work with talented people and find new recruits for your business as you see this project take shape.
  • Goodwill - Get positive goodwill for your brand as a sponsor who is building something innovating and contributing to the future.
  • Personal and Business Use - Use this system and technology for your home/boat/ship/company/organization
    Branding - Brand it with your organization identity.
  • Monetize - Invest in his project and take it to market with your brand identity

For Users

  • Get involved in the design phase and share your thoughts on how you would use this product or technology in your daily lives.
  • Give feedback at regular intervals and development stages to help this team to design and build a user-friendly system or technology.
  • Work with people from different countries, cultures, backgrounds and experiences. It's fun!


Get Recognition - Participate as an academician/student and contribute to research papers, college projects and participate in local, state, national, and international academic or technical conferences. Present papers on the innovations and advancements that have been made.

All of the above

Ocean Builders invites you to be a part of this project. You can be a sponsor, a contributor, a user, an academician AND you can be all of the above.