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Global Industry First for 3D Printed Housing

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Global Industry First for 3D Printed Housing

Official AC509 certification by the International Code Council Evaluation Service (ICC-ES) makes Black Buffalo 3D's NEXCON printer and Planitop 3D ink the first AC509 coded structural 3D construction solution in the world.

Black Buffalo 3D Corporation
October 18, 2022
Man with 3D construction printed building in progress
Black Buffalo 3D's proprietary construction ink, Planitop 3D, was specially developed through years of research, testing, and evaluation by independent and in-house material scientists. Photo courtesy Black Buffalo 3D Corporation

Black Buffalo 3D Corporation, a leading provider of large-scale 3D printers for construction, announced that its NEXCON printers and proprietary 3D concrete ink mix—sold through its partner MAPEI Corporation as Planitop 3D in North America—have been approved by the ICC Evaluation Service (ICC-ES), meeting AC509 requirements for 3D printed bearing, nonbearing, and shear walls up to 40' height.

Evaluation reports from ICC-ES are the most-preferred resource used by officials internationally to verify that new and innovative building products comply with code requirements. The ICC-ES certifies that Black Buffalo 3D construction technology meets the requirements of AC509, "3D Automated Construction Technology for 3D Concrete Walls" and has issued ESR-4623.

RELATED: 5 Biggest Barriers of 3D Construction Printing

Black Buffalo 3D currently provides the only complete 3D construction printing solution in the world to meet internationally recognized building code.


Materials matter and Black Buffalo 3D's proprietary Planitop 3D construction ink was specially developed through years of research, testing, and evaluation by independent and in-house material scientists at Black Buffalo 3D Corporation, its partner MAPEI Corporation—a leading construction materials provider for the building industry—and various third party labs including Intertek Group, a 130-year-old global assurance, testing, inspection, and certification supplier.

"Black Buffalo 3D's goal has always been to make 3D construction printing a coded alternative to traditional construction," said Black Buffalo 3D Founder and Interim CEO, Derek Chung. "Our AC509 certification is the result of years of hard work and dedication, and marks a milestone not just for us, but for the whole 3D construction printing industry recognizing Black Buffalo 3D clients can print structures that are equivalent to CMU block."

Black Buffalo 3D printing concrete material testing
The verification process included testing of the material, machine, and printed walls to verify that each component and final product could meet AC509 criteria at every stage of the 3D printing process. Photo courtesy Black Buffalo 3D Corporation

Fine-tuning the BB3D AC509 Concrete Mix—sold as Planitop 3D in North America—and BB3D's NEXCON printers for the 3D construction industry was no small feat. The AC509 certification represents the final step in the lengthy approval process; milestones already achieved include several 16+ hour print sessions on NEXCON printers by the Black Buffalo 3D team, the need for Intertek to purchase a stronger machine to test the walls, and tons of hard work from all parties involved. The verification process included testing of the material, machine, and printed walls to verify that each component and final product could meet AC509 criteria at every stage of the 3D printing process.


"Planitop 3D will unlock the true potential of 3D construction printing by providing contractors and builders with internationally accepted certification that their projects will be strong and durable. The resulting structures will be built quickly and at a fraction of the cost of traditional construction, which means that affordable housing can be within reach for more people." — Luigi Di Geso, President and CEO of MAPEI Corporation


3D construction printers are poised to improve the way the world approaches challenges related to attainable housing, industrial buildings, emergency shelters, and resilient infrastructure. Additive manufacturing offers a faster, more efficient approach to residential, commercial, and custom construction. On-demand and on-site 3D printing is now a legitimate coded technology. Additional details can be found in ESR-4623 available through request at Black Buffalo 3D's website and through ICC-ES. Planitop 3D is now available for sale directly through MAPEI for all 3D construction printers.

About Black Buffalo 3D Corporation 

Black Buffalo 3D Corporation is the PA based subsidiary of Big Sun Holdings Group, Inc.—with locations in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York. Black Buffalo 3D is poised to revolutionize construction and become the leading global provider of 3D construction printers (3DCP), proprietary construction "ink" (Planitop 3D), and 3D print construction consulting services. NEXCON printers are now available globally. Print smart and sustainable infrastructure on-demand with Black Buffalo 3D NEXCON printers.

For more on 3D printed housing, read it here on Utopia.

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