Decision MakersSustainabilityVoxelMatters Podcast

VM Podcast S2E6: Andy Jeffery on Marvel Labs and truly sustainable AM

Join VoxelMatters Senior Editor Edward Wakefield for a voyage through some of the most innovative and sustainable materials ever used for 3D printing

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In this week’s episode of the VM podcast, we conversed with Andy Jeffery, a serial entrepreneur with a long-standing history in the 3D printing/additive manufacturing industry that stretches back to the early nineties. Jeffery’s journey through the 3D printing industry offers a unique narrative – encompassing the founding of companies, exploration of diverse materials, and an ever-evolving interest in sustainability. All the way to his latest project, Marvel Labs.

Join Edward Wakefield and Andy Jeffery of Marvel Labs for a voyage through some of the most sustainable materials ever used for 3D printing We have coffee grounds and seaweed in our portfolio. And Seaweed is actually an amazing material. There are millions if not billions of tons of it floating around in the Atlantic Ocean […] and we’re taking that seaweed and just drying and grinding it up and then putting that in 3D printers and printing parts with that. And that’s the latest venture. Marvel Labs. Andy Jeffery, Marvel Labs

Jeffery’s first venture into 3D printing was with a company called Specific Surface, which was one of the first licensees of the Binder Jet 3D printing process from MIT. Using this technology, they developed ceramic filters for industrial gas cleaning. This marked the beginning of Jeffery’s 3D printing career and spurred him to found numerous companies thereafter, with each new endeavor drawing on his initial experiences.

From founding Viridis3D, a company originally destined to become a materials company that evolved into a machine company, to his next venture, Figulo, Jeffery’s trajectory was marked by both evolution and serendipity. He was quick to pivot Figulo from technical ceramics to consumer ceramics after an encounter with a frustrated artist at a conference. This flexibility resulted in a rewarding collaboration with Shapeways and rapid company growth. In 2013, Figulo was sold to 3D Systems, and Jeffery spent a few years with them before leaving to start Boston Ceramics.

However, Jeffery’s restless entrepreneurial spirit wasn’t quelled, and his interest in wood led to the establishment of Forust, in 2019 (VoxelMatters was the first AM industry media to report on that project). Despite the global pandemic, Forust caught the attention of Desktop Metal and was acquired by them within a year. Jeffery’s work with Forust ignited his interest in sustainability and circular economies.

His current venture, Marvel Labs, focuses on sustainable materials like sawdust, coffee grounds, and seaweed. These materials offer innovative solutions for 3D printing and encourage circularity in the manufacturing process.

Join us as we delve into this absorbing conversation with Andy Jeffery, a pioneering figure who has reshaped the contours of 3D printing over the last few decades.


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