MX3D: 3D Printing Steel

Printers are for desktop-sized items, right? Even with a 3D printer, you’re creating mugs, figurines and handheld items, right? What if that weren’t true?

A company called MX3D has bigger printing ambitions. It wants to print a steel bridge over a canal in Amsterdam in 2018.

This company develops robotic manufacturing technology with an eye to transforming future infrastructure and building methods. Dutch designer Joris Laarman is leading the project.

There are few better descriptions for what the project will look like than the one that comes from the teaser video by MX3D: “drawing in mid air”. In the video, a robot emits red-hot molten metal, leaving a curved bar of solid steel suspended in three-dimensional space behind it.

If this company is successful and its methods spread, it could have a significant impact on the practice of manufacturing large-scale infrastructure in the future.