3D Printed Salt - The Salt Project

3D Printed Salt - The Salt Project

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The Background

The Salt Project aims to fight desertification using a biomimetic approach.

The Salt Project uses locally available resources to propose an organically scalable solution that creates a positive impact on the existing ecosystem.

The Material

Salt Pup is the salt-based building material that is a result of this project. The developers have been testing different recipes, reinforcements, pigments and heating processes based on their original prototype. They have evidence that the material has similar strength as other common vernacular building materials such as rammed earth and simple masonry structures. Like its common counterparts, the salt pup works better with compressive as opposed to tensile forces, making it ideal for an arch, a dome or a shell structure. One of the most exceptional properties is its translucency particularly when cast or 3D printed into thin panels, leading to potentially interesting architectural opportunities. Another natural performance attribute is the brilliance of its white colouration, reflecting the intense solar heat within the desert environments. The obvious weakness is that it dissolves or rapidly erodes in water.  This is currently resolved by applying a protective coating to the material, although they are looking into bio based coatings and transparent tent structure to protect it as well as covering it with materials such as reed or sand.

The advantage

The Salt Project not only aims to turn salt into a building material, but to pump seawater to arid areas and use the sun’s energy to distil the valuable fresh water into greenhouses. The resulting salt is an exciting by-product of this closed loop ecosystem that produces no waste.

http://buildingwithseawater.com/

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The Background

The Salt Project aims to fight desertification using a biomimetic approach. The Salt Project uses locally available resources to propose an organically scalable solution that creates a positive impact on the existing ecosystem.

 

The Material

Salt Pup is the salt-based building material that is a result of this project. The developers have been testing different recipes, reinforcements, pigments and heating processes based on their original prototype. They have evidence that the material has similar strength as other common vernacular building materials such as rammed earth and simple masonry structures. Like its common counterparts, the salt pup works better with compressive as opposed to tensile forces, making it ideal for an arch, a dome or a shell structure. One of the most exceptional properties is its translucency particularly when cast or 3D printed into thin panels, leading to potentially interesting architectural opportunities. Another natural performance attribute is the brilliance of its white colouration, reflecting the intense solar heat within the desert environments. The obvious weakness is that it dissolves or rapidly erodes in water.  This is currently resolved by applying a protective coating to the material, although they are looking into bio based coatings and transparent tent structure to protect it as well as covering it with materials such as reed or sand.

 

The advantage

The Salt Project not only aims to turn salt into a building material, but to pump seawater to arid areas and use the sun’s energy to distil the valuable fresh water into greenhouses. The resulting salt is an exciting by-product of this closed loop ecosystem that produces no waste.

 

 

www.buildingwithseawater.com/