New Users

  • Interested new users are encouraged to contact the Director of the Shared Instruments Pool to discuss their planned project/experiment during the planning phase. 
  • This will allow the prospective user to determine if the chosen instrument(s)/method(s) are suitable to achieve their goals and what kind of experimental or instrumental constrains have to be considered during experiment design 


  • Prospective users must receive hands on training from facility staff before they are allowed to use the instrument independently. This includes specialized instruments, as well as, shared “household” instruments like centrifuges. 

  • Training can not be done by another lab member, colleague, etc. unless this was authorized by facility personnel 

  • When possible and appropriate training will be done with actual user samples so that users might gain preliminary data during the training and the facility personnel can help with troubleshooting and optimization, if necessary.

  • An initial meeting prior to training is required to discuss sample  preparation, requirements, and constraints.

Instrument Access and Scheduling

  • Some instruments are available on a walk-up basis. This includes the centrifuges, autoclaves, sonicators, gel imaging systems and other “short-use” instruments.
  • More specialized instruments  requiring  longer time periods for use can be scheduled through Google calendars. Users will be given access to specific calendars once they have completed the training and are approved to use that instrument independent.
  • Users should only book the time they will need and if their plans change, they must update their booking as early as possible as other people may be waiting for free instrument time. 

Cost of Usage

The following is an outline for university users. Outside users should contact the facility director for information. 


  • Initial Consulting and the First Test Experiment 

  1. The initial consult with facility personnel is free of charge. In most cases we will be able to perform a test experiment with the prospective user which includes training for first time users of the pool free of charge.


  • Buying into the Pool 

  1. If new users become regular users of the instrument(s) in the poolthe user group is expected to buy into the pool. Regular users are sorted into 3 categories (high, intermediate, low) once per year based on the usage in the previous year. This designation may change year to year. The idea is everyone contributes, everyone benefits. 

  2. In return, we will keep all the instruments in excellent running order by performing preventative maintenance, calibration, performance test and repairs (if possible) as well as coordinate service visits when needed. 

  3. In addition, we provide expertise and help with project planning, data collection, troubleshooting, optimization and data evaluation as needed/wanted by user. 

  4. There is no limit to the number of users from each group or to the number of instruments that can be used in the pool. 


  • Consumables, Repairs and Service Visits 

  1.  User groups are expected to provide or pay for all consumables (pipette tips, LN2, tubes, reagents etc.). 

  2. User groups are expected to pay for parts and repairs that become necessary because of neglect or carelessness. (You break it you bought it) 

  3. User groups are expected to contribute to parts/repairs needed due to normal wear and tear as needed. The costs are split between user groups according to the % of overall use of the instrument over the last two years. Consequently, cost for repairs may come quite some time after use. Minimal users are not included in cost.


In addition to all safety requirements from EH&S for general work in research labs and for specific work involving biohazards, radiation hazards, ect., the following is an outline of safety requirements. 
Please see the EH&S website for detailed information and trainings modules.
  1. Required Safety Training 
  2. General Safety Rules and Considerations
    • Food or drink is not allowed in the labs or around any of the instruments. 
    • Closed toed shoes and long pants are strictly required. Shorts and sandals/flip-flops or bare feet are prohibited. 
    • Safety glasses and lab coats are required. 
    • Disposable gloves should be used when appropriate. 
    • All waste must be disposed of according to EH&S regulations. 
    • If users are at any point unsure about safety during experiments they can ask for help anytime. Facility personnel can be contacted any time by email, text, call or by visiting the office C316 in JSCBB. If they are not in the office, they will leave a note saying where in the building they are or they will post their phone number on the door so that they can be easily contact.  
    • Users planning on working after regular hours should make sure that they are not alone, that someone close by knows that they are around and that they check in with the other person regularly. 
  3. Contact Information In Case of Emergency
    • Dr. Annette Erbse; Director of Shared Instruments Pool In Biochemistry
      • Phone: 303-492-0528 (regular hours), when applicable private cell phone number is posted on office door and at the instruments
      • Office: JSCBB, C316
    • UCB Police Dispatch (After Campus Hours): 911 or (303) 492-6666 
    • EH&S Health Physics (Campus Hours): (303) 492-6523 
    • Environmental Health & Safety (Campus Hours): (303) 492-6025 


  • If users are at any point unsure about the correct operation of one of the instruments, they should ask for help. Facility personnel can be contacted any time by email, textcall or by visiting the office C316 in JSCBB. If not in the office, they will leave a note saying where in the building they are, or they will post their phone number on the door so that they can be easily contacted
  • Users are expected to leave the instruments and workspaces in good and clean conditions. That includes all parts of the workspace (instruments, computers, keyboards, desks, etc.) as well as the proper disposal of any samples or waste products. Samples and waste should be disposed in the lab of the user. 
  • Users are expected to wipe down the parts of the instrument they touched as well as any keyboard, mouse, touchpad, desk etc. with a paper towel sprayed with 70% EtOH or 75% IPA (provided in spray bottles at the instruments) after they have completed their experiments.