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Engineering firm Arup and CLS Architetti are collaborating on the first 3D-printed concrete house in the European Union, which is now in production reports New Atlas writer Adam Williams. A prototype of the 1,076-square-foot, one-level home, named 3D Housing 05, is under construction in Milan, and will be unveiled during this year's Salone Del Mobile in April. The firms say the printing process takes only 48 hours.

The basic construction process involves extruding a cement mixture out of a nozzle layer by layer to build up the home's walls. However, 3D Housing 05 makes use of a robotic manipulator mounted on a movable base for increased flexibility rather than the more typical static printer. Once the machine has done its work, humans are then required to finish off the roof, windows, and doors, as well as any other finishing touches. An Arup representative told New Atlas that the company is hoping to automate this part of the process in the future too.

"The construction industry is one of the world's biggest users of resources and emitters of CO2," says Guglielmo Carra, Europe Materials Consulting Lead at Arup. "We want to bring a paradigm shift in the way the construction industry operates and believe that 3D printing technology is critical to making buildings more sustainable and efficient. It creates less waste during construction and materials can be repurposed and reused at the end of their life."

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