Who may use the facilities?
The Laboratory is available to undergraduate students, graduate students, staff, and faculty of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering; and to other students currently enrolled in one or more MSE courses. The priority for use of the Laboratory, in order of decreasing priority, is: Undergraduate Laboratory Courses, Undergraduate Lecture Courses, Graduate Laboratory Courses, Graduate Lecture Courses, Group Outreach/Tour Activities, Individual MSE Projects, and Individual Projects Outside MSE. Training in safety, standard laboratory practices that must be followed, and instruction in specific instrument use must be completed prior to individual use of the Laboratory. Furthermore, individual use of the laboratory may be restricted during group use times and use by persons or groups outside of MSE will be by special arrangement only.

 

When may the facilities be used?
Access is limited to the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or at other designated times when authorized laboratory supervisions is available. Instrument use without the direct assistance of staff will first require training in safety, standard laboratory practices, and specific instrument operation. After-hours use will require special permission from the Laboratory Supervisor and the arrangement of direct supervision by staff, faculty, or current GSIs.

 

How do I schedule time in the Laboratory?
Group use of the facility for instruction, demonstration or outreach activities must be scheduled in advance with the Laboratory Supervisor, Mr. Keith McIntyre. Individuals meeting the training requirements may use the facility during regular hours of operation on a walk-in basis, subject to the restrictions noted above. Training must be scheduled in advance by contacting Keith McIntyre or his designate.

 

How can I obtain a key to the Laboratory?
Only MSE faculty and staff will be assigned permanent keys. Graduate student instructors may be issued keys for the semester they are teaching once they have taken the appropriate training.

 

Are there fees for using the instruments in the Laboratory?
Some instruments in the Laboratory have hourly use charges associated with them and a university account number must be assigned before use is allowed. Information on specific recharge policies and the list of instruments for which recharges are required are available from the Laboratory Supervisor.

 

How do book equipment in the Laboratory?
Equipment that requires advanced booking can be reserved once proper training has been received on the booking site.

 

How is the Laboratory maintained?
Each individual or group user is responsible for conducting their work in a safe and professional manner, as described in the document, Rules for Laboratory Practice, which is prepared by the Laboratory Supervisor and staff. Failure to follow the practices detailed in this document, including restoring worksites to their original clean and organized state after use and reporting any instrument malfunctions or breakages, will subject the individual or group to loss of access privileges.

 

Who sets the policies described above?
A Steering Committee, comprised of faculty, staff, and students, has responsibility for establishing policies for the use of the Van Vlack Undergraduate Laboratory. The guidelines and updates are ultimately approved by the MSE Faculty. The Steering Committee welcomes comments on the established policies and procedures.