scorecardThe US military is partnering with a startup to build 3D-printed barracks in Texas
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The US military is partnering with a startup to build 3D-printed barracks in Texas

Brittany Chang   

The US military is partnering with a startup to build 3D-printed barracks in Texas
Tech1 min read
  • The US military is working with Icon to build the largest 3D-printed buildings in the US.
  • The 5,700-square-foot structures will be used as training barracks in Texas.

The US military is partnering with home construction tech startup Icon to construct the US' largest 3D printed buildings, the agency announced on April 5.

The US Department of Defense and Icon will print the three structures — which will serve as training barracks in Fort Bliss, Texas — over the next 10 months. The structures will stand at 5,700 square feet each when complete, larger than any existing 3D-printed building in the Americas, according to a press release.

"Constructing facilities using this cutting-edge technology saves labor costs, reduces planning time, and increases the speed of construction of future facilities," said Army Lt. Gen. Doug Gabram, commander of US Army Installation Management Command, said in the press release, echoing other 3D printing enthusiasts.

Icon uses its large in-house Vulcan printer system and "high strength" concrete, known as "lavacrete," to create its construction projects, which have included luxury homes, tiny homes, and what will soon be the largest neighborhood of 3D printed homes. It also previously worked with the Texas Military Department to create 3D printed training barracks, but this new construction with the federal agency will be the largest of its kind.

The department is now looking for ways to implement the "rapid" tech-forward construction method into "other types of facilities beyond barracks," according to Gabram.

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