This is the rapid prototyping branch of our project based on layered Solid Free-form Fabrication (SFF).

As part of the CyberBuild effort, we have recently acquired a Stratasys 1650 Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) machine which can build testable ABS plastic parts in matter of hours or days. The primary interface to the machine is a polygonal boundary representation of the desired geometrical shape expressed in the STL format which can be written by most CAD tools. We are conducting research to develop an effective file interface for curved surfaces and for part descriptions that contain unresolved Boolean operations

Stratasys 1650 Fused Deposition Modeling Machine

Below is the principle of operation - - - as well as a look inside the build space.

Summary of operating instructions for the FDM machine.

Links to Newer Products and Services:

Fortus 3D Production Systems use Stratasys FDM® (fused deposition modeling) technology.

REDEYE prototyping

DIMENSION -- 3D Printers

Parts made on our FDM machine.


This is the program that comes with the machine. It scales and positions the parts in the build volume; slices the geometry at regular intervals (typically 0.01 inch); builds the support structures for the overhanging features of the part; and creates the "roads" i.e. the path that the stage travels in x-y on each layer to deposit the part and support materials.

Some random hints and experience gained in the use of this software.

Parts that other people have built for us

by Metalcast Engineering
by Plynetics
by Kenwei Chen at the University of Texas.
by Malmberg Engineering
by Stratasys and by Sanders
by 3DSystem's Thermojet
Modules for the "Solar Arch"

Page Editor: Carlo H. Séquin