Aerial Additive Manufacturing (Aerial-AM): Flying 3D Printing Drones Inspired by Bees and WaspsDon’t fret! This swarm is just here to build some structures.Experts from the Imperial College of London have developed a new kind of drone that can actually print 3D materials while flying in mid-air. The flying robots were created with the collective building methods of bees and wasps in mind. These drones make up a system called Aerial Additive Manufacturing (Aerial-AM), where all of them work together to create something. There are two different kinds of robots in the said system.The first is called BuilDrones and is in charge of depositing materials during their flight. The second kind is called ScanDrones which measures the BuilDrones’ output and directs them to what they would do next. The researchers, led by professor Mirko Kovac of the college’s Department of Aeronautics, believe that the Aerial-AM’s in-flight 3D printing capabilities will be of great use for the construction industry. These drones will be perfect for building in difficult-to-access areas, such as tall buildings or even locations that got devastated by natural disasters. “We’ve proved the concept that drones can work autonomously and in tandem to construct and repair buildings, at least in the lab. This scalable solution could help construction and repair in difficult-to-reach areas, like tall buildings,” professor Kovac stated. Image credit: Yusuf Furkan KAYA, Aerial Robotics Laboratory of Imperial College London#robots #drones #3DPrinting #AerialAM #ImperialCollegeLondon #construction #manufacturing #technology #robotics #aeronautics 
The World’s Oldest BridgeWe don't built bridges the way we used to. Modern bridges need regular maintenance and even then will fail in a hundred years or so. But then again, Modern bridges have to carry much more weight than their ancient ancestors. The bridge you see here is called the Arkadiko Bridge or Kazarma Bridge. It's on a road between Tiryns and Epidauros in Greece, and it's been there since 1300 BC! The bridge is strong enough and wide enough for cars to pass over (one at a time, please), although it was designed for chariots. It's made of natural stone, cut and fitted together with no mortar. It is held together by pure physics! Read about the Arkadiko Bridge and other Greek bridges that are almost as old at Amusing Planet. (Image credit: Davide Mauro) #bridge #ancient #construction
Scientists Made Cosmic Concrete by Mixing Space Dust with Astronaut Blood, Sweat and TearsConstruction of a Martian colony can be pretty expensive with the transportation of a single brick costing more than a million British pounds. However, scientists at The University of Manchester have developed a way to potentially overcome this problem by using extraterrestrial dust and blood, sweat, and tears from astronauts to build concrete materials.In their study, protein from human blood mixed with urine, sweat or tears, could fuse a stimulated moon or Mars soil to produce a material stronger than regular concrete, that is suitable for extraterrestrial construction.In a Materials Today Bio article, scientists demonstrated that a common protein from blood plasma could be a binder for simulated moon or Mars dust to produce AstroCrete, a concrete material that has impressive strengths of 25 MPa (Megapascals) which is about the same as the 20-32 MPa seen in ordinary concrete. By adding urea, a biological waste found in urine, sweat and tears, scientists could further increase the strength by over 300% at 40 MPa which is significantly stronger than ordinary concrete.Scientists calculate that over 500 kg of AstroCrete could be produced over the course of a two year mission on Mars by six astronauts. If used as a mortar for sandbags or heat-fused regolith bricks, each member could produce enough AstroCrete to expand the housing for another crew member with each successive mission.#Mars #Masonry #Cosmic #OuterSpace #MartianColony #Construction #Astronaut #SpaceImage Credit:The University of Manchester