3-D printing, or additive manufacturing, has been around since the early 1980s, but what first was popular among hobbyists has become a growing industry with the potential to change the manufacturing process across the board. According to MarketWatch, the industry is expected to exceed $6.5 billion annually by 2024, with an annual growth rate of 13%.
Michael Cao was one of those early hobbyists, founding IC3D Printers in his basement in 2012, at first building machines for clients one at a time. Today, the company employs 18, designing 3-D printers, producing custom filaments and providing consulting services from its 10,000-square-foot facility on the West Side.
Columbus CEO recently sat down with Cao to talk about how the industry has changed and where he sees it going. The following is an excerpt of that conversation, edited for length and clarity.
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Story excerpt provided by The Columbus Dispatch.
Written by Lin Rice.
Originally published January 19, 2020.