World's first 3D printed bridge opens for cyclists

  • 04 Nov - 10 Nov, 2017
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Mag Files

A 3D printed bridge, commissioned by the province of North-Brabant and led by the company BAM Infra has finally opened for cyclists in Netherlands. Elements of this first of its kind bridge were printed locally at the Eindhoven University of Technology and it measures 26ft over a water logged ditch in the town of Gemert.

It is primarily made for cyclists but can carry the load of 40 trucks. Work on the overpass took three months last summer and utilised some 800 layers of concrete, reinforced with steel cables. The bridge opened recently, as part of a new road around the village of Gemert in the Netherlands.

Professor of structural design at the Eindhoven University of Technology, Theo Salet said, “The bridge is not very big, but it was rolled out by a printer, which makes it unique.”

He also said that it requires less material than traditional techniques, and is sustainable with regards to the environment.

The University professor emphasised that the printer deposits only the concrete where it is needed, which decreases the use of cement. This reduces CO2 emissions, as cement production has a very high carbon footprint.