3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project
 

3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project

research group giteco of the university of cantabria has immersed a series of 3D-printed artificial reefs in UK, french, and spanish bays – portugal will follow next – as part of the european project 3Dpare. the reefs are placed with the aim to study the most adequate way to regenerate life in the atlantic coasts. after placing the groups of reefs, the researchers will study and monitor the evolution of the results through a period of years, taking samples and observing the attraction and growth of flora and fauna in each group. fianally, they will conclude the most adequate materials and shapes to regenerate marine life in each location.

3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare projectall images courtesy of giteco / university of cantabria

 

 

earlier in 2020, the research group giteco finalized the production of the artificial concrete reefs using a 3D-printer in the labs of the civil engineering school of the university of cantabria. the group produced a total of 36 pieces, nine of which stayed in santander, while the other 27 have been sent to other three partner centers in the project: ecole supérieure d’ingénieurs des travaux de la construction de caen (france), universidade do porto (portugal) and bournemouth university (UK).  the 36 structures are placed at the sea bottom in all locations, for their subsequent monitoring by marine biologists who will dive periodically to assess the bio-receptivity of the new reefs.3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project

 

 

the 3D-printed artificial reefs are identical in the four locations: eight reefs of two types of material and four different shapes (cubic or random, simulating a natural rock and with big or small external bumps), together with a control piece with two different finishes: smooth or rough. the designs follow biological principles with regards to size of the caves for the entry of determined species of fish, algae adherence, bioreceptivity, etc. a total of 36 reefs were fabricated, each of which needed a day of work of the printer, reaching a weight of 1 ton.3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project

 

 

the project 3dpare has a budget of 1.9 million € funded by the interreg atlantic area program, which promotes actions of innovation and competitivity, biodiversity, natural and cultural goods and the cooperation among the 37 regions of the atlantic arc. the consortium is integrated by the university of cantabria and the ecole supérieure d’ingénieurs des travaux de la construction de caen, the instituto português do mar, universidade do porto, and bournemouth university.3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project 3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project 3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project 3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project 3D-printed artificial reefs immersed in european bays as part of 3Dpare project

 

 

 

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