Printing Clay: Design Optimization for 3D Printing Sustainable and High-Performance Housing
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe changing climate, a precarious economy, and political turmoil have left countless people homeless throughout the world. As more people are displaced by climate change and other issues, the number of people who lack adequate housing in the world will continue to grow. Due to the enormous impact of architecture and construction on the environment, a method for housing these people that is climate-conscious must be developed. Whether housing is needed for migrants and refugees arriving at international borders, or for citizens displaced within their own homelands by climate disasters, the key to housing these people is creating an adaptable method of quickly constructing shelter. 3D printing offers a fast and efficient solution which can utilize responsive design to minimize the environmental impact, while keeping costs low for unhoused people who are struggling financially. Utilizing parametric design techniques can lead to design strategies that optimize a house for the local climate conditions and reduce both the energy used to keep occupants comfortable and the resources extracted from the local environment. 3D printing can also begin to move from using concrete materials with a high carbon footprint to locally source materials like adobe made from soil extracted from the site, to achieve the lowest possible environmental impact. This research begins by analyzing the thermal performance of 3D printed samples with varying infill values to determine the best print parameters for good thermal performance in hot climates. Building on this, a strategy for creating responsive home designs that use this knowledge to modify the geometry of a structure according to its local climate conditions. These buildings are algorithmically optimized for the climates where they are needed to address housing needs, and moving forward, will be tested at larger scales with local clay materials.
Degree ProgramGraduate College