Objet Geometries, Billerica, MA, has introduced the Connex500™ multimaterial 3D printer based on the company's PolyJet Matrix™ technology, which provides simultaneous jetting of multiple model materials. The system enables the printing of parts and assemblies made of multiple materials in a single build, and fabricates Digital Materials™ on the fly, enabling the creation of composite materials that have preset combinations of mechanical properties. The printer prints parts with specific Shore A values, a scale used to indicate material hardness in soft, flexible materials. It produces prototypes of products that use over-molding in the manufacturing process, and fabricates translucent models that aid in medical applications by showing nerves, tumors, and other areas of interest. Three printing modes are available: DM mode operates at 12 mm per hour in 30-micron layers; HQ mode builds parts at 12 mm per hour in 16-micron layers; and the HS mode runs at 20 mm per hour in 30-micron layers. Build volume is 500 × 400 × 200 mm.

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This article first appeared in the January, 2008 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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