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Tiong Seng and Laing O’Rourke team up for 3D printing

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Mock-up curved concrete panels produced using Laing O’Rourke's FreeFAB technology. (Image: Tiong Seng)

Singapore-based Tiong Seng Holdings has signed an agreement with UK construction company Laing O’Rourke to explore the development and utilisation of 3D printing technology for the construction industry.

Leveraging on Laing O’Rourke’s proprietary FreeFAB technology, Tiong Seng will explore 3D printing for construction that allows complex building components and prototypes to be designed and fabricated in a cost-effective manner with shorter lead times. FreeFAB is said to have enabled the creation of innovative designs and shapes of structure formerly unattainable through conventional methods.

One of Laing O’Rourke’s most notable infrastructure projects in the UK, the Crossrail and its core Elizabeth line, reportedly feature curved concrete panels that line the roof and glide around corners never seen before on such a scale. Harnessing its FreeFAB 3D printing technology, Laing O’Rourke was able to achieve a high degree of control over the geometry and finished form of the precast components.

Encompassing a combination of both 3D printing and five-axis surface milling that is ideally suited to off-site precast facilities, Laing O’Rourke’s FreeFAB technology supports Tiong Seng’s manufacturing-for-construction approach. With the adoption of reuseable wax as the medium for printing, the technology will also dramatically reduce the carbon footprint from production and support the Group’s commitment to environmental sustainability.

“Staying one step ahead of the curve, Tiong Seng has always been an early adopter of innovative construction technologies. Our partnership with Laing O’Rourke is a natural progression for the Group as we look to continually enhance our suite of construction capabilities,” said Pek Lian Guan, CEO of Tiong Seng Holdings. “We are delighted to be partnering with industry leader Laing O’Rourke, leveraging on their world-class expertise which spans the full range of engineering and construction offerings alongside its proprietary FreeFAB 3D printing technology. This is just the beginning of a long-term partnership, which will bring the next wave of technological revolution in the form of 3D printing to the construction industry.”