A few weeks ago we speculated that Stratasys might begin focusing on new materials to exploit their huge base of installed 3D printers as their FDM patents expire, and it appears they've done so with the announcement of their new Nylon-12 material.
Fred Fisher, Director of Materials at the company explained to Fabbaloo that the company believes the "Factory of the future is tied to materials", and that Stratasys "wants to solve more high requirement applications through materials."
Their first step in this direction is Nylon-12, which is a rather unique material. It's said to be twice as strong as any other nylon material, 5-6x higher impact resistance and 6x elongation to break. Fisher said Nylon-12 "delivers 80% of ULTEM properties for half the price." (ULTEM being Stratasys' premiere high-temperature/high-strength material to date.)
Where would you use this black material? It's ideal for snap-fit parts or those requiring vibration or shatter resistance. We've been testing it with the black iPhone case seen above, and trust us, that case has been on and off many times and the nylon material shows no signs of wearing out. We're hoping this material eventually makes its way to the MakerBot line.