<< Concr3de was founded in 2016 with the aim of providing a way to produce sustainable and unique forms of architecture, construction, design and manufacturing, using inkjet 3D printing technology. In this blog post, Matteo Baldassari (co-founder) shares his Mass Customization vision and how, thanks to ShapeDiver, it is one step closer to reality. >>
Mass Production vs Mass Customization
While traditional manufacturing methods still dominate across almost every industry, there's no denying that the human desire to be different is pushing companies to try new processes which can help them deliver custom-made products in a cost-efficient way.
Mass customization through Additive Manufacturing is already very common for materials such as plastic or metal. Renowned 3D printing companies have been providing these services since years, but for some specific materials like concrete and stone, this process has still been too expensive or too complex for it to be commercially viable.
Up until now, the manufacturing process of objects made of these materials require artisanal experience and are very (human) labor intensive. For these objects to be considered for industrial scale adoption, their manufacturing process needs to be fully automated.
The Missing Link
Mass Customization has not been truly available on a global scale due to the lack of digital tools that help the end user to go from an idea to a physical object.
Thanks to technical developments and convergence of ideas like ShapeDiver and Concr3de, a company can now publish an algorithm in the form of a digital product on their website, which then their end users can customize online and immediately 3D-print a unique design.
This combination of parametric design via Grasshopper/Rhino, web-based customization and Additive Manufacturing can allow products to be designed and directly ordered online in a completely new range of materials at affordable prices.