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Stratasys’ has launched a new $330,000 3D printer, which, the company says, is the first machine able to create objects in colored, flexible materials.
The Objet500 Connex3 3D printer uses rubber and plastic as base materials, although according to Stratasys (the company which now owns the MakerBot series) material combinations will be able to offer different levels of rigidity, transparency and opacity.
At the technical level, the printer can go as fine as 16-micron layers, offering a high level of detail and finish, and can pump out around 30kg of resin (that is, base material) per run. The company officials claimed, the advanced printer could cut down industrial design prototyping times by 50 percent, although they were talking about the time from prototype to market, not printing time itself. The Objet500 Connex3 has been launched recently, although those flexible color printing materials won’t be available to buy until Q2 later this year.