Construction 3D Printing

A scaled down medieval irrigation system 3D printed in concrete

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The medieval irrigation system of the Lankheet Estate was 3D printed to scale by Dutch company Vertico for a fantastic educational outdoor artwork in the form of a concrete 3D printed water playground.

As part of a large project of Waterschap Rijn en IJssel on the Landgoed Lankheet, the team at Vertico was asked to concrete 3D print a work of art. Centuries-old irrigation systems have been reconstructed on the estate in order to exhibit the power of traditional methods.

To make these techniques, which run over the large estate, more insightful, the company printed a scale model with working locks. These serve an educational purpose, in which primary schools and interested parties can admire the innovativeness of our ancestors themselves, and can actively turn the water around.

For this project, no wooden molds were needed to cast the many meandering rivers, but we were able to make optimal use of the freedom of form of 3D printing to realize the complicated shapes. The Lankheet Estate has been (re)discovering traditional water management techniques and using them on medieval irrigation fields. Vertico was asked to create the water playground, a scale model of these innovative irrigation methods in order to showcase their effectiveness. Now, visitors can learn about the way in which these irrigations systems work while actively participating in simulating them. They can then see these systems in action full scale across the estate.​

In order to produce this object, Vertico and client Eric Brinkmann of the Lankheet Estate planned out the models on a smaller scale. Designer Iman Hadzhivalcheva then converted these drawings to CAD and to robot code.

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Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites and, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

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