Home 3D Printer BigDelta WASP to 3D Print Eco-Fiendly Village – Update

BigDelta WASP to 3D Print Eco-Fiendly Village – Update

Italian 3D printing company WASP has signed an agreement with Daniele Bassi, mayor of Massa Lombarda, for the construction of a 3D printed, eco-friendly village.

March 24, 2016: The Italian Village Massa Lombarda is going to become an important Technology Experimentation Centre dedicated to 3D printing. The 12-meter-tall BigDelta WASP 3D printer will be installed on a green area in the industrial zone of the town to create houses and vertical vegetable gardens of different sizes. The village dubbed Shambalha will also feature a laboratory equipped with desktop 3D printers to create furniture, ceramics, jewellery and biomedical solutions.

“We decided to name the technological village Shambalha,” explained WASP business owner Massimo Moretti. “From the name of the mythological place that symbolizes the city of peace, tranquility and happiness. A city quoted in a lot of cultural documents for its spirituality and technical advance. House, Food, Employment, Healthcare and Wellness are the basic human necessities of life.”

The idea of WASP is to create a sustainable economical model of a “Maker Economy”, with everything being self-made and nobody depending on monopolistic companies. WASP wants to export this model to the world’s poorest countries, where there is no productive potential or well functioning infrastructure.

The BigDelta was first presented at the “Reality of Dream” meeting in Massa Lombarda meeting back in September 2015. After setting it up at the Rome Maker Faire in October 2015 it will now return to operate in Massa Lombarda as of April over the the contract period of the next three years.

Mayor Daniele Bassi and the WASP Business Owner Massimo Moretti, Image: WASP
Mayor Daniele Bassi and the WASP Business Owner Massimo Moretti, Image: WASP


August 11, 2016: Update – WASP advances work on 3D printed eco village

WASP has just reached out to us with an update on what has happened so far at the Shamballa Technological Park.

“We have already proved that two men and one machine can 3d-print a comfortable and healthy shelter with extremely little money. We are very satisfied of the results, even if we know there is still a lot to do“, said WASP founder Massimo Moretti.


WASP has started the process of printing a shelter using only soil and straw as building material, which is extruded layer by layer with the 12 meter tall BigDelta 3D printer. The team calculated that 270 cm of wall with a 5 meter diameter requires 40 tons of material. Each of the 135 layers weighs approximately 300 kg and takes around 20 minutes to print. 2 cubic meters of water and 200 kwh of energy were required. The costs sum up to only € 48 including energy and material: € 32 for energy, € 3 for water, € 10 for straw and € 3 for motor hoe gasoline. WASP states that even more money could be saved by kneading the material instead of using a machine.

Clay and straw with no additive can be easily printed in 3D”, Moretti says. “The period of transformation from liquid to solid allows to print around 60 centimeters per day, or even more in the summer (maybe one meter per day). Therefore: two men and one machine can 3d-print a comfortable and healthy shelter in a very short time and with really little money.”

So far the team has also encountered and solved numerous problems that occurred during the process, including the loading of material, printing interruption and recovery, protecting the wall from rain, just to name a few. According to WASP the wall is of high quality and initial analysis confirmed it can bear strong stress while the fibre guarantees its endurance.

After taking a well deserved break of one week, WASP will continue its work on site and raise the wall to 4 meters, create the door and build a roof. Moreover, the team plans to test new materials and deepen their research on the current soil-straw mixture. Their final goal is to automise the system and have it print a shelter within a few days.

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