3D Printing for Customizable Deployable Structures

Problem Statement

Current market for spatial solutions for outdoor spaces is dominated by tents and cubicles, which are light-weight and easy to assemble. As a mass-produced product, tents and cubicles have a fixed size and form, and, because each event presents specific spatial needs, a standard product is a limiting factor since once a structure is purchased, it cannot be modified to be tailored to the needs of the next event.


This research project aims to develop a customizable booth system that can be tailored to different needs each time the structure is re-installed. To accomplish this, the system will use standard linear components with custom designed 3D printed connectors. For each event, structures can be designed based on the existing set of parts (bars and connectors), and when needed, new connectors can be custom-designed and quickly 3D printed.

Rendering of an installed bamboo gazebo
Rendering of an installed bamboo gazebo

Key Benefits/Outcomes

  • SUTD developed a generative software to automatically generate the design of 3D printed joineries according to scanned bamboo sections.
  • Generative booth system is easy to transport, assemble and sustainable.
  • The first prototypes of individual bamboo poles with nodes have proven the functionality of the system. The workflow from cutting and scanning of the bamboo poles to the fabrication of the nodes and connectors has been tested successfully and shows high accuracy and reliability.
  • The prototype has been selected by Archifest 2020 Curatorial Team to be displayed from 25th September until 31st October 2020.



Mr. Marc Lee marc.lee@ntuitive.sg

SUTD DManD dmand@sutd.edu.sg