Architecture

3D-printing spiders and flying drones: The blue-sky plan to rebuild Mosul

3D-printing spiders and flying...
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal was designed for the Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture competition
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal was designed for the Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture competition
View 17 Images
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would involve drones transporting building material to 3D-printing robots that take the form of spiders
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The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would involve drones transporting building material to 3D-printing robots that take the form of spiders
The spider-shaped robots and drones would be tasked with building over 50,000 affordable homes
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The spider-shaped robots and drones would be tasked with building over 50,000 affordable homes
Callebaut envisions rebuilding five major bridges destroyed during the fighting and installing farms and new homes atop, to help feed and house the city's beleaguered residents
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Callebaut envisions rebuilding five major bridges destroyed during the fighting and installing farms and new homes atop, to help feed and house the city's beleaguered residents
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would make use of rubble from war ruins
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The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would make use of rubble from war ruins
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would also involve greywater recycled from bathrooms and kitchens being used for irrigation
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The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would also involve greywater recycled from bathrooms and kitchens being used for irrigation
Inside one of the 5 Farming Bridges' homes
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Inside one of the 5 Farming Bridges' homes
"Five 3D printers in the form of articulated spiders will allow the construction of 30 houses per day, or nearly 55,000 housing units in five years spread over the five bridges," says Vincent Callebaut Architectures
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"Five 3D printers in the form of articulated spiders will allow the construction of 30 houses per day, or nearly 55,000 housing units in five years spread over the five bridges," says Vincent Callebaut Architectures
"To feed these 3D spider printers, drones will continuously bring them construction materials coming from the districts in ruins; previously crushed and transformed in recycling centers," Vincent Callebaut Architectures adds
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"To feed these 3D spider printers, drones will continuously bring them construction materials coming from the districts in ruins; previously crushed and transformed in recycling centers," Vincent Callebaut Architectures adds
According to Callebaut, the design is influenced by classic Islamic architecture
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According to Callebaut, the design is influenced by classic Islamic architecture
Inside one of the 5 Farming Bridges' homes
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Inside one of the 5 Farming Bridges' homes
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal was designed for the Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture competition
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The 5 Farming Bridges proposal was designed for the Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture competition
"Five 3D printers in the form of articulated spiders will allow the construction of 30 houses per day, or nearly 55,000 housing units in five years spread over the five bridges," explains Callebaut
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"Five 3D printers in the form of articulated spiders will allow the construction of 30 houses per day, or nearly 55,000 housing units in five years spread over the five bridges," explains Callebaut
"All debris will be transformed into resources. To feed these 3D spider printers, drones will continuously bring them construction materials coming from the districts in ruins; previously crushed and transformed in recycling centers," adds the architect
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"All debris will be transformed into resources. To feed these 3D spider printers, drones will continuously bring them construction materials coming from the districts in ruins; previously crushed and transformed in recycling centers," adds the architect
The 5 Farming Bridges' homes would be stacked atop each other in a pixelated style inspired by Islamic Muqarnas (a kind of vault)
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The 5 Farming Bridges' homes would be stacked atop each other in a pixelated style inspired by Islamic Muqarnas (a kind of vault)
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would involve drones transporting building material to 3D-printing robots that take the form of spiders
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The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would involve drones transporting building material to 3D-printing robots that take the form of spiders
Vincent Callebaut Architectures' main idea centers around using high-tech 3D-printing robots to rebuild Mosul's five bridges that were destroyed during the fighting
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Vincent Callebaut Architectures' main idea centers around using high-tech 3D-printing robots to rebuild Mosul's five bridges that were destroyed during the fighting
The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would make use rubble from war ruins
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The 5 Farming Bridges proposal would make use rubble from war ruins

Following the expulsion of the so-called Islamic State in the area, Vincent Callebaut Architectures has unveiled a blue-sky proposal to regenerate the war-torn city of Mosul, Iraq, using high-tech 3D-printing technology involving spider-like robots and drones. Callebaut envisions rebuilding five major bridges destroyed during the fighting and installing urban farms and new homes atop, to help feed and house the city's beleaguered residents.

The 5 Farming Bridges proposal was designed for the Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture, an Iraqi competition, and came third place. The competition's aim appears to be promoting ideas and raising awareness of Iraq's housing challenges, rather than actually building the plans. Either way you're best considering this one as food-for-thought.

The proposal involves recycling rubble from the ruins of Mosul's wartime destruction into building material using specialist recycling centers. This material would then be used to 3D-print the city's five major bridges.

Hovering drones would then work in tandem with spider-like 3D-printing robots. The drones would feed the spider robots suitable material to construct over 50,000 modular homes atop the bridges, stacked in a sort of honeycomb-like shape inspired by Islamic Muqarnas (a type of vault). The bridges would be covered with urban farms and other greenery too, in a bid to guarantee food for their inhabitants and improve the bridges' thermal performance.

"Five 3D printers in the form of articulated spiders will allow the construction of 30 houses per day, or nearly 55,000 housing units in five years spread over the five bridges," explains Callebaut
"Five 3D printers in the form of articulated spiders will allow the construction of 30 houses per day, or nearly 55,000 housing units in five years spread over the five bridges," explains Callebaut

"Five 3D printers in the form of articulated spiders will allow the construction of 30 houses per day, or nearly 55,000 housing units in five years spread over the five bridges," says Vincent Callebaut Architectures. "All debris will be transformed into resources. To feed these 3D spider printers, drones will continuously bring them construction materials coming from the districts in ruins; previously crushed and transformed in recycling centers."

This wouldn't be a Callebaut project without some sustainable technology, and on this note, the bridges would also incorporate passive cooling and solar panels, the latter both for heating water and producing electricity. Water from the Tigris river would be used for irrigation, as would greywater recycled from bathrooms and kitchens.

Callebaut's distinctive style of sustainable architecture may seem overly ambitious, but he's surprised us before by getting one of his ideas commissioned into a real building. The Agora Garden Tower is currently under construction in Taipei, Taiwan and looks impressive.

Source: Vincent Callebaut Architectures

4 comments
Reece Agland
Nice but sime realitic plans would be nice. We all helped to demolish it only fair we help rebuild it.
Kristianna Thomas
ISIS has introduced anarchy into the regional politics and devastation of the population. The region will take decades to recover from, if it is able to recover at all. Whole populations have been uprooted and spread out over the world, but now we have a contest to design a whole city out of the ruins of war and devastation. While it may be food for thought, this does not give a child living in the street a mouth of food or a warm place to sleep in. This does not give a roof over those who have become homeless and war weary. Instead of giving an effort in futility, they should give an effort in hope.
JimFox
Pie in the sky. Don't believe it for a second!
Daishi
@Reece Who is this "we" that destroyed Mosul and must be on the hook to rebuild it? I don't think you speak for everyone. I need to replace my back porch, does this "we" take demolition requests? I can't afford to help rebuild Mosul and I know lots of others who certainly cannot afford it. I'm sick of having to help pick up the tab for conflicts around the world.