In order to decrease the environmental impact caused by the construction sector, biobased materials need to be further developed to allow better integration and acceptance in the market. Mycelium composites are innovative products, with intrinsic properties which rise the attention of architects, designers and industrial companies. Mycelium is the underground network of fungi, such as mushrooms. The mycelium acts as a natural glue to bind biomass. Mycelium grows through the fibers, which function as a growth substrate and a bio-composite matrix. Different organic residual streams from agricultural waste (straw, hemp shives, grass or pepper stems) can be used as substrate. Mycelium composites can be divided into board and foam materials, both of which have the potential to substitute conventional materials, i.e. medium density fireboard (MDF), as well as conventional insulation materials i.e. EPS or PIR. As the material is approaching the market, we would like to explore the material’s different end-of-life possibilities.

Assignment description

As an intern at MNEXT, you will have the opportunity to participate in the upcoming project “MycEoLA” which focuses on conducting and assessing the diverse end-of-life possibilities of mycelium. You will be part of the remanufacturing research section of “MycEoLA”. The main focus includes:

  • Remanufacturing Research: Exploring the processes and techniques required to transform used mycelium insulation into new insulation panels and boards.
  • Property Testing: Conducting experiments and tests to assess the characteristics and performance of these new materials.
  • Optimal Application: Collaborating with the team to identify the best uses for these mycelium-based materials, potentially in the field of sustainable construction and insulation.

Your main activities include:

  • Literature research on relevant topics.
  • Working at the mycelium lab, growing and remanufacturing mycelium bio-composite materials.
  • Property testing – material screening which includes (not exclusive to) compression strength, flexural strength (for boards), and thermal conductivity.
  • Analyzing potential application for new materials and perhaps some prototyping if there is time.

Starting Date

February – July 2024. The length of the internship graduation assignment is approximately 20 weeks. The student will get an internship fee of €350,- per month.

Desirable skills/qualities of the student

The student should be able to work independently and carry out independent laboratory research (after an introduction). Background in environmental science, product design, and/or biology is preferred. HBO or university students are welcome.


Contact person concerning this assignment: Fran Ortega Exposito / IIse Rovers
Phone: +31 643716722 / +316 83000015
E-mail : /
Visiting address: Avans Breda  / AKV St. Joost Den Bosch — Kunst Academy
Street / number, areal code and place: Lovendijkstraat 61-63, Breda / Parallelweg 21-23, Den Bosch
Postal address: 4818AJ / 5223 AL.

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