Back in 2014, Danish company 3D Printhuset opened the country’s largest 3D printing store to date, a 3,000-square-foot space in downtown Copenhagen. In the two years since the store opened, the company has seen tremendous success and interest – enough so that they found that 3,000 square feet just wasn’t big enough anymore. On November 22, the official ribbon-cutting ceremony took place for a new, upgraded 3D printing store – and it’s twice as big as the original.
3D Printhuset roughly translates to “the house of 3D printing,” and that’s literally what the new store is. The new facility is an actual three-story townhouse with a floor area of more than 6,000 square feet, entirely dedicated to 3D printing. Also located in downtown Copenhagen, the brand new 3D Printhuset will showcase 3D printers, 3D scanners and more from leading companies such as 3D Systems, Artec and XYZprinting.
“Moving to bigger facilities is a natural step following two years of massive growth, where we have quadrupled our sales and number of employees, opened an additional store in Aarhus (the second biggest city in Denmark) and acquired a 3D Systems distributor,” said Jim Larsen, director of 3D Printhuset. “We are very pleased not only with our own expansion, but also with the fact that 3D printing is becoming a factor in more and more applications and industries. 3D printed constructions are now a reality in several places around the world. This is an area that we are going to focus on in the coming years and we are therefore very pleased that Enrico Dini is here to celebrate the opening of our new house for 3D printing; even if this is more than 200 years old and therefore for good reason is not 3D printed.”
Speaking at the official opening of the new house, which was attended by more than 100 visitors, was Enrico Dini, founder of D-Shape, which manufactures giant, construction-level 3D printers. Dini was one of the first to predict that 3D printing would one day be used for large-scale construction projects. While it’s only been in the last year or so that 3D printed housing and other construction has become feasible, Dini foresaw it ten years ago.
“Already when I was in my 40’s, I understood that 3D printing could be the way to affordably achieve beauty in architecture and construction, and since then I devoted my life to make it happen,” said the 54-year-old Dini. “Within the next decades I imagine that our future urban landscape will be enriched by architectural, algorithmic and topology optimized buildings, perfectly harmonized with the environment due to 3D printed constructions.”
3D printed construction is about to become a major focus for 3D Printhuset, which, along with three other partners (an unnamed construction company, a materials supplier and a materials specialist company) received a grant last year from the Danish government to begin researching the potential for 3D printed construction applications within Denmark. So far, 3D Printhuset has visited more than 30 3D printed construction projects, both on university and professional levels, around the world to gather more information. In addition, the company has developed their own concrete 3D printer for the purpose of testing different materials, including recycled materials, for viability as 3D printing materials.
To further expand their construction business, 3D Printhuset has created a new company called Larsen & Partners, a consulting company offering advice, consulting, analysis and reports centered on 3D printing in construction, as well as organizing conferences and presentations on the topic.
You can watch the first presentation, given by Partner and Chairman of the Board Henrik Lund-Nielsen at a recent Nordic BIM conference, below:
Between the new 3D printing house and the creation of Larsen & Partners, things are looking very promising for the 3D Printhuset team. Larsen himself is very optimistic about the continuing evolution and future of the 3D printing industry, and about his companies’ place in it.
“Following the disappointment over the hype in consumer printing, many thought that the growth and spreading of 3D printing would be more limited, but that did not happen,” Larsen said. “Now, there is even more drive and thrust behind the technology and the technology has been adopted by more and more of the world’s leading companies and industries. The focus now is not only prototypes and visualizations, but use of the technology for real production, for making the final products. 3D Printhuset was involved when the 3D print technology became available for everybody via low cost desktop printers and we aim to continue to be play a key role, now where the technology will be used for constructions and real production. Our new house, totally dedicated to 3D printing, will help to achieve this.”
Discuss in the 3D Printhuset forum at 3DPB.com.