The multi-phase challenge was designed to advance the construction technology needed to create sustainable housing solutions for Earth and beyond. The competition, completed in 2019, awarded a total of $2,061,023.
The 3D-Printed Habitat Challenge was a NASA’s Centennial Challenges program competition to build a 3D-printed habitat for deep space exploration, including the agency’s journey to the Moon, Mars or beyond. The multi-phase challenge was designed to advance the construction technology needed to create sustainable housing solutions for Earth and beyond. The competition, completed in 2019, awarded a total of $2,061,023.
- Phase 1, the Design Competition, required teams to submit architectural renderings and was completed in 2015. ($50,000 prize purse/$40,000 awarded)
- Phase 2, the Structural Member Competition, focused on material technologies, requiring teams to create structural components. It was completed in 2017. ($1.1 million prize purse/$701,000 awarded)
- Phase 3, the On-Site Habitat Competition, completed in 2019, challenged competitors to fabricate sub-scale habitats, and had five levels of competition – three construction levels and two virtual levels. For the virtual levels, teams used Building Information Modeling software to design a habitat that combined allowances for both the structure and systems it must contain. The construction levels challenged the teams to autonomously 3D-print elements of the habitat, culminating with a one-third-scale printed habitat for the final level. ($3.15M prize purse/ $2M awarded)
The 3D-Printed Habitat Challenge was managed through a partnership with NASA’s Centennial Challenges program and Bradley University. Bradley partnered with sponsors Caterpillar, Bechtel and Brick & Mortar Ventures to administer the competition. NASA’s Centennial Challenges program is part of the agency’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, and is managed at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.