There are several ways for you to use the equipment available in the MCL. Consultation and project submissions are ideal for those without a scientific background and provide the most support for your project. Equipment assistance and self-serve equipment use is available for clients who wish to have a more hands-on approach to their project.
We are happy to consult with you for free via email or phone about the techniques and machines that will be the most useful for your desired results. Recommended techniques or characterization tools may include services that we do not provide. In that case, we will try, but do not guarantee, to find another lab that offers the technique. Send us an email or give us a call during our open hours, and we’ll be happy to consult with you.
If you wish to leave the analysis to us completely, you are welcome to submit samples. For simple projects that include fewer than 10 tests per month (such as 10 samples on one machine, or 5 samples on two machines), our on-site team of undergraduate technicians should be able to handle your analysis. For larger projects, please contact lab staff directly before moving forward with the project submission checklist. Larger projects may require hiring additional students dedicated to your project, and we need to be advised of the work involved in your project before we move forward.
We aim for a 2-3 week turnaround time; turnaround time depends on the project’s scope, the number of projects in our queue from other clients, and the availability of the equipment in question. We do not have refrigerated, desiccated, or non-air sample storage, so all samples should be packaged accordingly. Results returned can be anything from raw data files to a full report. Interpretation of results or creating in-depth reports will be billed at the rate of our technician’s time if that time exceeds 15 minutes.
If you are interested in being an active participant without being trained, we offer technician assistance. This is ideal for short or one-time projects, or projects with few (5 or fewer) samples. This is a great way for those who have little experience with characterization techniques to become familiar with their results.
Self-serve equipment use
If you have a large number of samples (5+) or a long-term project (2+ months), you or one of your group members should be trained to use the lab equipment. This decreases lead times to schedule time with our lab staff and keeps you from having to pay for technician assistance. Once trained, the lab equipment is yours to use according to availability.