We believe it’s time to transition towards a circular economy.

So we formed this non-profit to build and distribute open-source machines that recycle waste plastic into new products using 3D printing; robots that grow and prepare food while composting scraps; and to distribute the education for how to use those resources. By distributing both the machines that produce physical and food products from waste– and the education for how to use those machines–we hope to accelerate the advent of the circular economy.

Our Current Projects:

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SPORE Huntsville:
Through our initiative to Support Public Outreach, Resources, and Education (SPORE), we distribute what we learn from the R&D at Mycelium.
We currently host free classes and events to teach the public how to utilize 3D Printing and recycling to make their own products. Eventually, we hope to establish multiple SPORE chapters across the country.

Our vision for the future of food in 2050

The Internet of Food:
We’re excited to be participating in the food system vision prize to present an idea we’ve been thinking about for a long time. We’re presenting the concept of networked robotic food systems that produce healthy, hyper-local food, generate an income for their owners, and regenerate landscapes.

3D Printing CartsBringing 3D Printing to Libraries:
We build carts with everything needed to start a 3D printing space on one mobile cart; including a computer for slicing and 3D modeling, and a 3D Printer.

Our first 3D printing cart was sponsored by Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Alabama, Inc. (TMMAL) and was donated to the Cavalry Hill Public Library. With each cart donated to Public Libraries, we expect it to potentially bring 3D Printing access to an average of over 2,500 children and families per year.

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Plastic Recycling HubBringing Plastic Recycling to Local Universities:

As part of our pursuit of accelerating a circular lifecycle in plastic production and consumption, we’ve built and donated a small recycling hub to a local engineering university. The equipment includes a plastic shredder, a Filastruder (melts and extrudes shredded plastic into 3D Printing Filament), and a Filawinder (Automatically winds the plastic). Now students can learn how to recycle plastic waste into new 3D printing filament!

automatic recycling trash can

“Smart” recycling cans:
We’re currently building an open-source waste bin that automatically identifies and sorts trash from recyclables, and even food scraps. Machine learning and AI will be critical in helping to identify and sort plastic. Therefore, we’re currently working on gathering the many images of trash to train a machine learning algorithm. We will make this database of trash images open.

Eventually, we hope to reward people for deposits with “credits” to use at public 3D printing kiosks (described below) and be able to identify and sort deposited plastic.

See our Projects Page for all our projects!

How we’re working towards a circular economy:

We believe there are ways to utilize robots, AI, 3D printing and recycling technologies to help transition towards a circular economy.

Circular Plastic:
Utilizing plastic identification and sorting technologies–combined with 3D printing and chemical decomposition–we can not only help close the loop on plastic production and consumption but clean plastic from the environment. Eventually, we hope such technologies can be combined into an outdoor 3D printing and recycling vending machine where anyone can get something 3D Printed from–depositing a plastic bottle (or a different plastic 3D print) to pay for it. These machines can make anything. Connecting those 3D printing vending machines to a digital wallet–and a network of trashcans that automatically identify and sort trash into recyclables–enables people to be credited for depositing that trash, and spend those credits at the 3D printer. This incentivizes cleaning the environment, and a circular plastic production economy.

Circular Food:
Imagine if robotic gardens used rotational aquaponics to grow hyper-local ingredients–coupled with a robotic chef to turn it into an edible masterpiece. Now imagine that food production system connected to a network of other food production systems, creating an Internet of Food. The exchange of robotically-grown food can enable the systems to pay for themselves. Those same systems can plant permaculture food forests, which can help integrate into the network of food–creating an Internet of Food. 

We formed this non-profit to

Build and distribute open source machines that recycle, 3D printers that produce goods from recycled waste, robots that produce food and the education for how to use those resources. By distributing both the machines that produce products from waste and the education for how to use those machines, we hope to empower people around the world to begin creating products locally, while also contributing to cleaning the environment.

We do the research and development on various projects within our non-profit: 

Then share what we learn publicly through our initiative to Support Public Outreach, Resources and Education:

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Check out our Projects Page to see everything we’re working on!

About

About the Volunteers:
We’re a group of 3D Printing and plastic recycling experts, makers, roboticists, builders, artists, and teachers. We develop and distribute resources that ultimately empower the public to begin producing locally, recycling waste and cleaning the environment in the process.

As our environment continues to accumulate plastic in landfills, and food resources continue to become more scarce, we’re pressured more every day to find solutions. We think our contribution can be transforming the way people think about waste–recycling plastic into new products and food scraps into new food.

About Mycelium:
Mycelium is a 501(c)(3) non-profit formed mid-2018 with a mission to accelerate the transition towards a circular economy, and empower people to create their own goods using technology like robotics, AI, and 3D Printing.

As a result, we have a variety of projects and programs around this mission; from open source R&D projects aimed at producing hyper-local foods, tackling plastic waste in the environment, to building machines that automatically identify and sort waste, to hosting classes and events on 3D Printing.

See our Projects Page to view all of our current and planned projects.

Our 3D Printing educational resources and open source plans are shared through our SPORE initiative.