Policies and Procedures

All University of Notre Dame (UND) researchers have equal access to the services and instruments provided by the NDIIF. Instruments are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis and external users are accommodated as time permits. Independent use of the instruments is encouraged when possible; however, all unassisted use must have the approval of a NDIIF staff member. With each instrument up to thirteen hours per week may be devoted to projects that are funded by industrial customers. We strongly recommended that all first-time users of the NDIIF contact the facility director to schedule a meeting to discuss the user's project and costs and facility policies. Once researchers have received training on the use of facility instrumentation, they may reserve instrument time.

The following rules are necessary to maintain facility equipment in optimal operational condition and to avoid unnecessary downtime. Communication is key - we can only maintain the equipment properly if the users keep NDIIF staff informed of all instrument issues.

  • Instrument training is performed only by facility staff and instrument and operator fees apply. Users found training others may be restricted from the NDIIF
  • Facility managers reserve the right to deny unassisted instrument use until all levels of training have been successfully completed.
  • Users must reserve time on the instrument calendar before using the instrument. Failure to do so may result in restricted access.
  • Users can only reserve time for their own use and no user may reserve time on any instrument for someone else. Users doing so may be denied access to the facility.
  • Users should not attempt to fix any equipment problems, regardless of how small or insignificant the problem may appear. Facility staff must be informed of ALL instrument issues using the contact information on the facility doors or on the website. 
  • Principal investigators are financially responsible for damages due to improper use by their group members. This includes cleaning due to contamination from samples or improper use of equipment.
  • If a user must cancel their reservation, they must do so in prior to their scheduled session so that others may use the equipment. Cancellation must be performed either on the calendar or by contacting facility staff. Failure to cancel a session will result in a charge for instrument time.
  • To maximize instrument use, long-term experiments should be scheduled during the evening or weekends.
  • Instruments and equipment must be vacated promptly at the end of the scheduled session. Instruments and lab spaces must be left in a clean and left in good working order. Microscopes in the Optical Microscopy Core should be turned off when no other users are scheduled within the next two hours. If another user is scheduled, the equipment should be left on.
  • Approval for after-hours use is restricted to experienced users who have demonstrated a high degree of proficiency and independence on a given instrument, and is at the discretion of the staff. At least 12 imaging sessions are required prior to consideration for granting after-hours privileges.
  • Access to NDIIF will be restricted upon failure to adhere to facility policies.

Damage to instruments by the users may be billed to the Principal Investigator