Wasted and the 3D Canal House

Raisa van der Kroef & Marlies Franken

Research: WASTED | 3D Canal House

Introduction: We, Marlies Franken and Raisa van der Kroef, are two art students at Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam. We wanted to make this report to create aware of worldwide pollution. Furthermore, we wanted to search for the right solutions to the world’s waste problem: Luckily, there are already many companies that respond to this enormous problem.

We found two companies that we wanted to investigate: Wasted and the 3D Canal house. The similarity between these two companies, is that they are both struggling with the ‘plastic soup’ problematic. Both companies use old plastic (bottles) to make a new object. Of course this is a great initiative, but there are still some questions left to answer, for example: How many resources are needed in the production process of these new objects? With resources, we mean power, water and for example cleaning chemicals.

The Ps of each company + Diagram:

WASTED: The Social Building Projects

Wasted initiated a project with a few people in the north of Amsterdam. They were worried about the amount of plastic people use in their daily life. This led them to the idea to collect all that plastic, and sort it by color. They washed the plastic and made building blocks out of it. These blocks are intended for children to play with, but can also be used to make benches and other furniture.

Another great project that has similarities to the Wasted project is 3D canal House Designed by DUS Architects. Their aim is to demonstrate how 3D printing could revolutionize construction by increasing efficiency and reducing pollution and waste, and offer new tailor made housing solutions worldwide. 3D printing could also play a significant role in the quick building of low-cost housing in impoverished areas and to help those affected by disasters.

(Source: http://www.wastedlab.nl/)

People

The project Wasted is excellent for bringing people together and educate them about upcycling. Wasted works with locals in North Amsterdam. They organize workshops to teach people about recycling and the waste of plastic. Wasted organizes workshops about plastic recycling at local schools. In the diagram further in this essay, its shows that Wasted excels at promoting cooperation of locals.

Planet

The project works for a better planet, furthermore they make use of a redundant material, namely used plastic. With this project they turn used plastic into a material to make new furniture and toys. They don’t have to make new materials themselves.

The diagram shows that they really want to make an effort to the world and nature.

Profit

All the people in the neighborhood use a simple plastic bag to collect the used plastic. After this you go to the place where the project collects al the plastic bags. For every plastic bag that a neighbor hand over they get a green coin. This green coin can be used at different local shops. Every week the local shops have something that the local people can buy with the green coin.

The profit of this project is for Wasted itself very low. They don’t receive a lot from an economic point of view.

 

Social and Environmental sustainability

Environmental sustainability is the ability of the environment to support a defined level of environmental quality and natural resource extraction rates indefinitely. This is the world’s biggest actual problem, though since the consequences of not solving the problem now are delayed, the problem receives too low a priority to solve.

How many resources are needed for the production process? (For example: power, water and cleaning chemicals). They collect local plastic using a cargo bike, and the oven and power tools are the only energy-dependent hardware used in making WASTED Blocks.

For cleaning they collect so much plastic that they are to use the cleanest LDPE for Blocks. This way they don’t waste resources and energy cleaning. They don’t use water in the process. Plastic we don’t personally reprocess is recycled at municipal waste facilities.

Wasted

This diagram concludes that Wasted very big is in bringing people together.

3D Canal House

The 3D Print Canal House is a three-year publically accessible ‘Research & Design by Doing’ project in which an international team of partners from various sectors works together on 3D printing a full-size canal house in Amsterdam. This building project has the goal to revolutionize the building industry and offer new tailor made housing solutions worldwide. The development is done with new bio-based and sustainable and recyclable materials.

(Source: http://3dprintcanalhouse.com/frequently-asked)

People

This project is set up with very different teams and partners all over the world. The opportunity that 3D Canal House gives (when you are a 3D print engineer & builder or a print and material project leader) is to participate with the 3D Canal House. (They also have places for internships).

The 3D Canal House only wants specialists to help, but they offer the public to take a look and found the project: they have a open space in Asterweg 49 in Amsterdam where you can look at 3d printed objects and parts of the House itself.

When you look at the diagram of the 3D canal house, you will see that they do less for the society. They learn new things while printing and can discuss them with each other, but that isn’t there main priority.

Planet

Just like the Wasted project is the Canal House made from old plastic (Plastic soup). They are currently printing with bioplastics. The granulate that goes into the Kamermaker is called Macromelt, a type of industrial glue (Hotmelt) developed by Henkel. It is made of 80% of vegetable oil. It melts at 170 degrees Celsius. We aim to print with a material that is sustainable, of biological origin, melts at a relatively low temperature, and of course is sturdy and stable.

The diagram shows that the 3d canal house big in the environment is.

Profit

The project is partially funded by the municipality of Amsterdam, Amsterdam Fund for the Arts and the DOEN Foundation, and partially by the contributions of our partners. A lot of the sponsorship the 3D Print Canal House gets is in natura, through contributing knowledge or materials. In fact, the 3D Print Canal House is one big collaboration project, in which everybody shares and gets a share. And of course our visitors help finance the house by paying an entrance fee. So the profit is made out of helping people and sustainable materials.

In the diagram you will see that the economy not their main priority is.

How much is used of the world for the making process? (For example: power, water and cleaning)

The power that is used for printing is not so much. Your kettle for tea uses much much more power than the 3d printer.

 

3d canal house

This diagram concludes that Wasted very big is in bringing people together.
Three Head Questions + Research

There is a lot of information to be found on the internet about Wasted & 3D Canal House, but of course we still had some questions left to do our research:

The questions:

  • How much is used of the world for the making process? (Power, water, cleaning)

For example: How many water is used to clean the plastic?

  • Is the outcome of the project as positive as the process?

For example: The plastic is being removed from the sea, but aren’t we making still a lot of waste during the process?

  • How strong is it in the end? What can we make out of it when we are done using it?

For example: Can we make oil of it? Or melt it back in his original form?

We send those questions in e-mail to both of the companies, and we received some answers:

 

Wasted:

How much is used of the world for the making process? (For example: power, water, and cleaning)

It looks like you’re talking about natural resources, in which case we use them quite minimally. In our Open Source Report, you will see that human energy dominates our low-tech press and mold process. We collect local plastic using a cargo bike, and the oven and power tools are the only energy-dependent hardware used in making WASTED Blocks.

Re cleaning, we collect so much plastic we are able to use the cleanest LDPE for Blocks. This way we don’t waste resources and energy cleaning. We don’t use water in the process. Plastic we don’t personally reprocess is recycled at municipal waste facilities.

 Is the outcome of the project as positive as the process?

Before answering this question, I would like to ask you clarify what you mean by outcome and process. Do you mean the outcome of the project in terms of the Blocks, community engagement, increased recycling behavior, or? And with process do you mean the process of making Blocks, collection and reprocessing, or?

 How strong is it in the end? What can we make out of it when we are done using it?

The Block is very strong in the end. Each is solid, weighing approx. 850 grams, and they are modular for building. You can use Blocks to build items such as tree planters for the park or indoor or outdoor furniture; the goal is for the Blocks to be able to build the largest variety of objects in order to suit community needs and preferences. If the community finishes, say, using the tree planter, they can take it apart and turn it into a bench.

3D Canal House:

How much is used of the world for the making process? (For example: power, water, and cleaning) 

It depends on the material. The materials we are printing with is mostly renewable raw (linseed). The process with the wasted plastic is still a kind of new. We are trying to the best we can and to print without any waste! And the energy that is needed is not taking more than a kettle that you have at home.

Is the outcome of the project as positive as the process?

If “the project” is the 3D Print Canal House, we aim to complete the house by the end of 2017.

The process so far is very interesting and we learned a lot on how 3D printing can change the building industry within the upcoming years.

How strong is it in the end? What can we make out of it when we are done using it?

The strength is related to the used material and the structural design.

If and how we can recycle to print material depends on how the material is used in the product and if this is combined with other materials.

We appreciate the answers and want to say ‘thank you’!
­­Researching the area

We already know that Wasted is also a ‘social project’, but here is a map of the area that they use and that canal house uses. You will notice the big difference.

Kaartje wasted KAATJECANAL

Conclusion

We were so exited to explore these projects!

What we really liked is that the two projects were totally different companies but both working on the same subject. It’s nice to have the feeling that there are also companies that do care about the world.

Sometimes we had a hard time to investigate the projects, because we aren’t good in formulating questions and we don’t speak English all that well.

And on top of that are we not studying the same discipline. So, the contact that we had was more or less once a week, not more than two hours, and just a quick “hi” in the hallway while running to the next class.

For the next time we will try to improve our English and try to do an even bigger investigation!

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