Rize announced a new material: black.
The company produces a rather interesting 3D printer whose technology includes a hybrid thermoplastic extrusion and inkjet system.
The extrusions are altered in various ways by the inkjet system. One way is to apply a “release” liquid at the top of support material. This enables the support to still provide its normal function, but at the same time it completely avoids fusing it to the main part, making support material removal trivial.
They’ve also introduced a coloration ink that can embed images or text on a part using their standard Rize One material. Recently they’ve hopped up this capability by introducing a means to use it for officially marking parts with, for example, serial numbers.
But Rize has not yet deployed their complete system. Their inkjet system has room for six inks, but currently they use only two. My thought is that they will eventually add CYMK capability and produce a machine able to 3D print in full color textures, with each voxel being able to take on any color.
That works because their material is white, which can, in theory, be colored in this way.
But this week they’ve announced a new material color: Black, with the product name of Rize One Black. It seems to have the same engineering characteristics as its paler partner material, so it may be only a color introduction.
But what is interesting to me is that the black material is unlikely to be able to make use of the marking system they introduced recently, unless they’ve somehow invented a specialized ink that can change black into light colors.
So why introduce black material then? I think it has something to do with part color popularity. We know from 3D Hubs quarterly Trends Report that by a vast margin the two most popular colors for 3D printed parts are always black and white. They report that white represents 20% of their requests, while black is requested a whopping 40% of the time. The next most popular color (red) is requested only 4% of the time.
I suspect this is the real reason Rize introduced black material: People Want It!