A transition to a circular economy is needed to revolutionize the construction sector and make it more sustainable for present and future generations. While the construction industry and the production of construction materials contribute to environmental pollution, they also offer great potential for addressing environmental problems due to their carbon sequestration and the possibility of having a circular material. Mycelium composites are being researched as an alternative for isolation foams (XPS, EPS, etc) and boards (particle board, OSB, MDF).

In this project MNEXT, together with Fraai architecten and Stichting De Kleine Aarde will research the production method for mycelium composites with different mycelium skin types (aerial hyphae). This project will be a proof of concept for making mycelium composites with different types of fungal skin. This will be done by experimenting with the growing conditions for example the excess, or lack of air and CO2. As can be seen in the Figure 1 and Figure 2, the diverse growing conditions result in a different fungal skin.

One appears more smooth and almost has a leather/plastic look and feel while the other is more “fluffy” with a hair like look and feel. By being able to produce and reproduce samples with different skin types throughout we would be able to test them to determine the effect on its physical and mechanical properties. Furthermore, understanding the impact of the effect of different skin types on the smell, look and user experience of the mycelium materials might help accelerate the acceptance and implementation of the materials in construction.

Assignment description

As an intern at the Centre of Expertise Material and Energy Transition (MNEXT) you would be responsible for the development of protocols to develop biocomposites with the two different types of mycelium skin. To achieve this, your project will consist of (at least) the following activities:

  • Literature study on development methods for pure mycelium and mycelium composites
  • Experiment with different mycelium growth parameters
  • Production of mycelium samples
  • Writing protocols on the chosen method to develop composites with different mycelium skins
  • Testing of physical properties of the produced materials
  • Writing a final report about your project

Desirable skills/qualities of the student

The student should be able to carry out independent research and project management. A background in environmental sciences, engineering, microbiology, product development are preferable. HBO or university students are preferred.

Starting date & compensation

The proposed starting date is September 2024. The total length of the assignment is 5 months.

The student will get an internship fee of €350,- per month.


Contact person concerning this assignment: Shannon Peuling

Phone: +31 (0) 88 525 7825


Visiting address: AKV st. Joost – Kunst Academy

Street / number, areal code and place: parallelweg 21-23, s’Hertogenbosch

Postal address: 5223 AL

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