As South Africans ponder this week’s unprecedented earthquake in Johannesburg, the South African Housing & Infrastructure Fund (SAHIF) announced today that the innovative 3D concrete-printed homes it plans to roll out in South Africa can withstand seismic activity.
This roll-out is possible due to a joint venture announced in June between SAHIF and Dutch construction technology company CyBe Construction, a leading provider of 3D concrete printers and earthquake-proof material.
SAHIF CEO Rali Mampeule says this week’s earthquake in Johannesburg further illuminates the country’s need for resilient, sustainable and quality housing.
“The demand for affordable quality housing in South Africa far outstrips the supply. We can better address this challenge by reducing the cost of materials and labour, speeding up the construction process, and improving the quality of the finished houses. Not only are 3D houses more affordable and time efficient to build, but we know they are durable enough to withstand the kinds of seismic forces that surprised us all this week,” says Mampeule.
The cornerstone of constructing these resilient structures lies in advanced design principles and materials selection. 3D concrete printing allows architects and engineers to work in unison to design and create buildings that can absorb and dissipate the energy produced during seismic events. These aesthetically pleasing houses are structurally sound, incorporating earthquake-resistant materials such as steel and polymer.
The cornerstone of constructing these resilient structures lies in advanced design principles and materials selection.
Integral to this innovation is the CyBe Mortar, a high-strength, earthquake-resistant concrete specifically formulated for 3D printing. Coupled with the option to use enhanced graphene polymer from UK manufacturer 2-DTech, these advanced materials promise superior durability and flexibility, making them ideal for constructing earthquake-proof homes.
Statistics SA’s 2019 General Household Survey shows that almost 13% of the 59 million population lived in informal settlements. An estimated 2.5 million affordable homes are needed to solve the shortage, which is increasing daily.
Mampeule says their partnership’s mission to provide affordable and rapid housing solutions is bolstered by the successful on-site training using CyBe’s mobile 3D concrete printer at the University of Johannesburg.
“This technology demonstrated its capacity to construct a complete house within just five days, marking a significant stride towards addressing the country’s pressing housing deficit,” said Mampeule. “Introducing these innovative 3D-printed, earthquake-proof homes offers a sustainable solution to the country’s housing shortage and reassures residents of their safety.”
As SAHIF continues to pioneer the housing sector in South Africa, Mampeule says this joint venture can revolutionise the construction landscape.
“We have a significant housing deficit, a problem that has persisted for many years. With the blueprint for resilient, cost-effective housing at their fingertips, we can accelerate constructing a safe and secure future for all our citizens,” Mampeule concludes.