Additive manufacturing and circular economies

Jennifer Johns, Daniel Eyers, Rick Lupton, Aris Syntetos, Jessica Robins

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter examines the growing significance of digital manufacturing, specifically additive manufacturing (AM; 3D printing) to circular economies. We outline the multiple printing technologies that are suitable for application to the built environment, discussing their contemporary use and their potential future roles. Having established the technologies that are available, we will turn to analyse how AM technologies can support circular economies in the built environment. There are several entry points in the circular economy, which we will discuss in turn. (1) Design – AM can offer flexible production that supports modularity, design for disassembly, and waste avoidance. (2) Construction – flexibility in on- or off-site construction, minimisation of material use, and maximisation of waste reduction. (3) Post-construction – how AM can support remanufacture, reuse and repair. (4) Materials development – how innovation in materials is driving AM and its application to the built environment. The chapter will be illustrated with contemporary examples and will conclude with an assessment of the potentials and challenges surrounding AM in built environment circular economies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCircular Economy for the Built Environment
EditorsRabia Charef
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherRoutledge Taylor & Francis Group
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781003450023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 3 Jun 2024


Dive into the research topics of 'Additive manufacturing and circular economies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this