Technology No. 1: FDM
What it is: Fused Deposition Modeling (patented additive manufacturing method trademarked by Stratasys, Inc.)
Inventor: Scott Crump
Year: Late 1980s
Materials: Plastics are most common, but other compound materials are also used.
Process: Material is extruded through a nozzle that moves over a build platform, which is lowered as each layer is added; that is, fine lines of molten thermoplastics are extruded onto a platform following a 3D design pattern. The material solidifies when deposited.
Price Range: $200 to $18,000
Systems Sold by: Stratasys, Makerbot, 3D Systems, Fab@Home, Solid Concepts