Future Dome Communities

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When envisioning a safe, bright future in supportive, cooperative communities, Pacific Domes has partnered with 3D Sustainable Developments (3DSD) in sharing their vision of building dome communities. 3DSD is a Washington State social purpose corporation with a vision of providing viable solutions to governments, disaster relief organizations and industries to address the vast housing shortage and global waste streams. 

concrete dome
Exterior rendering of 1,800 sq ft two story dome home

The environmentally and socially conscious construction technology offers sustainable, village-scale developments using their proprietary high-performance concretes. These new advancements in concrete technology give 3DSD Eco Domes an estimated lifespan of 200-2,000 years, making possible their vision of handing homes down from generation to generation. 

3D printed dome, concrete dome
Indonesian Style Dome

Never has there been a time in human history where the need for this eco friendly housing solution has been greater.  Designed to withstand wildfires, tsunamis, earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes, 3DSD Eco Domes are an ideal structure for many vital applications, in areas affected by volatile weather and geological conditions. These domes are also the ideal housing solution for industrial facilities that need plant-worker housing installed quickly and cost effectively. The domes are  a great option for wellness, retreat and education centers as well.

3D printed dome
Patented Eco Dome Printer

The domes: 3DSD’s Eco Dome Printers go straight from raw material to full-scale home shells in a matter of hours. Designs are digitally transferred and printed on site. These domes are cost-efficient, earth-friendly, extremely durable and easy to maintain. Moreover, without modifications, the domes are designed to use less than half the heating and cooling energy required for equivalent conventionally constructed buildings–making them ideal for low-cost modifications required to achieve net-zero and net plus energy performance. 

3D printing in progress

The Printer: The first-generation structural dome printer is 44 ft. in diameter and 35 ft. tall. It is designed to print up to 38 ft. in diameter and 19 ft. tall. When built for housing, the standard design includes a second floor, creating over 1,800 sq. feet of living space in the 38 ft. dome. The second floor covers only 60% of the dome to allow for a great room with 19 ft. ceilings.

concrete dome interior
Interior kitchen design

The Process: The Eco Dome Printer is modular and packs into one shipping container for ease and affordability of transportation. Once on a construction site, the printer requires approximately six hours to construct. A dome can be printed within one day. If the dome is to be used as housing, additional time is required to install precast wall segments, doors, windows and interior finishes. 

interieor concrete dome
19 ft high ceilings in the living room allow for a spacious design

Waste Streams: Industrial waste can be transformed into high-performance concretes on a scale that can drastically reduce the amount of land-filled materials and mining waste left to pollute surrounding waterways. 3D sustainable Developments is partnering with government organizations, industrial facilities and mining operations to convert waste, at its source, into new building materials. Sequestered wastes have been tested for leaching by state and national laboratories, and the results showed no detectable levels of toxins. 

Gothic Style Dome

The Numbers: In their local market, their base prices range from $51.73/sq. foot for a 200 sq. foot insulated shell or $169.45/sq. foot for the turnkey tiny home, down to $27.29/sq. foot for a 1,814 sq. foot insulated shell or $98.12/sq. ft for the turnkey three bedroom home. Compare that to the local low end cost of construction at $280/sq. ft. which uses materials that are vulnerable to wildfires, earthquakes, mold, rodents etc and will need a new roof every 15 years and new foundation every 50-80.

While these prices reflect labor and material costs locally, 3DSD is working on securing multi-thousand unit contracts in developing nations where they estimate being able to provide 1000 sq. foot, natural disaster resistant, turnkey homes for $28,000 a piece. All while producing 40% less landfill waste due to additive rather than subtractive manufacturing, and using concretes that can contain 60% waste and produce 60% less CO2 emissions during manufacturing. These numbers are big when you consider that 50% of ALL landfilled material comes from construction and demolition.

concrete domes

The Status: 3DSD is a startup company that has built, patented and tested their prototype printer. They have received the permitting to build their first 1870 square foot home as a proof-of-concept project and have prepped the site. The company is currently raising their seed round of investment funding to complete the project. Stay tuned to their website’s News Blog for project updates and feel free to take part in their mission by sharing with anyone who may be interested. We have a long way to go to make the construction industry a sustainable one but 3DSD is committed to doing their part to #buildbackbetter

For more information, please visit: www.3dsd.org

3D Sustainable Developments brochure: Download here.