The Future of Sustainable Soundproofing Starts With Mushrooms

Ty Emerald
By Ty Emerald

Traditional acoustical materials, commonly used to manage sound in various environments, rely on synthetic fibers like fiberglass or foam. These materials do work; they effectively absorb sound, but they’re a far cry from environmentally sustainable. Whether your soundproof panels are made of foam or fiberglass, they’re all derived from non-renewable petroleum resources and are difficult to recycle.

Jonas Edvard’s Myx Sail / Floor just might solve this problem with a unique and pioneering approach that he recently unveiled at the Mindcraft Project 2023.

This innovative sound-absorbing panel is crafted from organic materials like mushroom mycelium, hemp, and willow. Unlike traditional acoustical solutions, the Myx Sail / Floor panel is designed with sustainability at its core by focusing on the potential of composite biomaterials not only in aesthetics but in functionality as well.

Edvard’s design harnesses the natural properties of mycelium, which, when combined with hemp and willow, results in a panel that isn’t only environmentally friendly but also structurally sound. Meaning, it’ll hold up!

The process begins with the mycelium growing and bonding within a pre-designed mold, gradually incorporating the plant fiber mixture to form a flexible yet rigid panel. This method emphasizes a respectful balance with nature, drawing inspiration from the role of mushrooms as natural recycling agents.

The sound-absorbing qualities of the Myx Sail / Floor are noteworthy. Collaborative research with Arup Engineers in Germany has highlighted its ability to absorb frequencies between 200 and 2500 Hz, which is comparable to the performance of traditional materials like glass wool. This range covers the spectrum of human speech, making the panel ideal for improving acoustics in both residential and commercial spaces, and now even outdoor events.

Beyond its practical benefits, the Myx Sail / Floor challenges conventional perspectives on the use of organic materials in design. The designer invites people to touch the panels, to experience the tactile qualities of mycelium, hemp, and willow.

In doing so, Edvard aims to foster a deeper appreciation for the aesthetic and functional value of natural resources, so people can better appreciate what natural helped create.

This panel isn’t just about sound absorption; it’s a statement on the feasibility and beauty of sustainable design practices, pushing the boundaries of how organic materials can be integrated into modern living spaces.

In essence, the Myx Sail / Floor is another tangible example of how innovation and sustainability can go hand in hand, challenging us to rethink our approach to material usage and design. It’s not just a sound-absorbing panel; it’s a proof-of-concept towards a more sustainable and aesthetically conscious future.

Jonas Edvard

Jonas Edvard is a danish designer working in the field of material science and applied design experiments. He investigates the raw material, its history, and sustainability with the aim of locating the functional value in natural resources with an endless potential.

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