3D printed villas and Earth like planets


Inhabitat's Week in Green

Inhabitat’s Week in Green: 3D-printed villas and Earth-like planets

Each week our friends at Inhabitat recap the week’s most interesting green developments and clean tech news for us — it’s the Week in Green.

NASA dropped a bombshell this past week: The Kepler Space Telescope has discovered the most Earth-like planet to date. The rocky planet is slightly larger and warmer than our world, but it orbits a star and has the right conditions for liquid water. Meanwhile, the search for alien life goes on — and Stephen Hawking gave his support to a $100 million project seeking to find out if we’re alone in the universe. Exploring distant worlds is a challenging endeavor — last week NASA proposed a novel robotic spacecraft that could harvest wind energy while surveying gas giants like Jupiter. And the Smithsonian Institution launched a Kickstarter to save Neil Armstrong’s moon landing space suit, which is starting to fall apart after years of storage.

What if you could point a gadget at an apple and instantly know how much sugar it contained? That’s the promise of SCiO, a tiny hand-held device that can measure the molecular footprint of virtually any object. In other tech news, designer Kristof Retezár created an amazing gadget that harvests water from the air while you ride your bike so you don’t have to stop for fill-ups. MIT researchers demonstrated a water filter made from a tree branch that can remove 99 percent of E.coli bacteria. And researchers developed a 3D-printed bottle cap that can tell you if the milk’s gone bad before you take a sip.

3D printing is also progressing on the macro scale — last week a Chinese company showed just how far 3D-printed architecture has come by assembling an entire villa in less than three hours. If you’re looking for something even more futuristic, we present you with the Skysphere — a solar-powered home in the clouds that responds to the sound of your voice. City dwellers will swoon at this tiny apartment that packs an entire two-bedroom house into a single space. The secret? A hidden bed that drops down from the ceiling. And just for fun, we showcased the work of Nathan Sawaya, who makes incredible large-scale Lego sculptures of comic heroes and villains.



by Inhabitat  | July 26th 2015 At 10:00am


Printing humans

Over the last few weeks we’ve brought you cutting edge news about 3D printing in its different forms. This one will blow your mind; 3D PRINTING HUMANS on other PLANETS!


A new idea for colonizing space: 3D printing humans on other planets

May 31, 2014

For the time being, space travel is still difficult and impractical, not to mention the health problems that occur. But what if we can send bacteria with our genetic code instead and use it to 3D print humans there?

“Our best bet for space exploration could be printing humans, organically, on another planet,” Adam Stelzner, the Curiosity rover’s lead engineer at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said during a conference this month.

The concept basically starts out by encoding human genetic information in bacteria so that our DNA can be used to 3D print humans when we arrive on another planet. Since many scientists believe the only way to guarantee the long-term survival of the human race is to colonize other planets, so if we could print humans there, we could skip the trip.

“Maybe we will colonize other worlds not with astronauts in space suits, but with bacteria,” said Steltzner at the event. “Those considerations seem beautiful, fantastic.”

This sounds absolutely crazy. The idea comes from Gary Ruvkun, a biologist at Harvard and others Havard Med Dept of Genetics. “Like using bacteria like computer memory,” he said. ‘It’s sort of like an iPod that you send to another planet. And the bacteria can store information very densely.”

But who is going to do the reassembling on distant planet? Maybe we can wait for the terraforming scenario of the DNA-carrying bacteria which reassembles naturally through organic processes. Or using 3D printers and robots?

“The idea of 3D printing is, something’s created out of matter at the location, just with the information. And that’s kind of what we’re talking about here,” Steltzner said. “That kind of feels like a very fancy 3D printing to me.”

On earth we have already been able to print out human parts and organs, but biotech geneticists believe that we can even print alien life here on earth. US biologist Craig Venter is developing a “digital biological converter” device that works like a cosmic fax and can transport a digital DNA file to a new location, at the speed of light, and recreate the original lifeform there. So if it works here, could it work the other way around?

Steltzner believes printing humans, organically, on another planet is more realistic than sending people out there.

“This is completely speculative,” said Steltzner. “But it doesn’t require you moving faster than the speed of light, and it doesn’t require infinite amounts of energy.”