April 8, 2014
Columbus, Ohio – IC3D Printers from Dublin, Ohio has earned the Crystal Award for Excellence from Ohio’s Edison Technology Centers. IC3D Printers was nominated for their impressive work as a startup in the field of additive manufacturing.
Founder Michael Cao accepted the award on behalf of IC3D Printers on March 27 during a luncheon at the Ohio Statehouse featuring many Ohio state legislators, executives, and members of other innovative businesses in the Buckeye State.
The six Edison Technology Centers provide a variety of product and process innovation and commercialization services to both established and early-stage technology-based businesses. Each year Ohio’s Edison Technology Centers recognize companies that have found progressive ways to succeed in today’s highly-competitive markets.
Winners of the Crystal Award for Excellence must work directly with one or more of the Edison Technology Centers to qualify. IC3D Printers was nominated by PolymerOhio, which is focused on enhancing the Ohio polymer industry’s global competitiveness and growth.
Cao was exposed to 3D-printing technology first while working as an engineer at Honda. He was fascinated by additive manufacturing, and began building printers in his basement using an open-source design. It wasn’t long before he recognized a problem – the raw material filament needed by his machines was very expensive and often of poor quality. He took the bold step to create his own company to manufacture and sell filament
Along the way, PolymerOhio added its expertise to the equation, first helping Cao affordably obtain the equipment he needed to get started, later helping to adjust processing parameters in order to increase filament throughput, improve quality, and reduce costs.
“Michael had the idea of making his own filament, and the wherewithal to raise the funds and procure the equipment. He had 80 or 90 percent of what he needed; we helped him get the rest. The credit goes to him for succeeding. We just helped him get there quicker and for less cost,” said Bruce Fawcett, Executive Director at PolymerOhio.
PolymerOhio is a nonprofit organization comprised of a team of highly skilled manufacturing technology professionals who help manufacturers growth more profitably through a mix of services and resources that significantly improve how they develop, commercialize, manufacture, and distribute innovative products.