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Confocal and Advanced Light Microscopy Facility

CMVM, QMRI, UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH

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Use of the facility/booking

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The CALM Facility

The CALM facilityprovides a range of high-end light microscopes and related services to researchers within and outside the University of Edinburgh. First-time users have to contact the Facility Manager or the Head of the facility before they start their work. The microscopes can be used un-supervised by trained and experienced users. Alternatively, a fully assisted image acquisition service is available for inexperienced users, who do not wish to use the systems on a regular base, but who nevertheless want to exploit the provided imaging technology. To become a regular user you first have to register with the facility via the PPMS. This is to sign up for appropriate training and access to the booking system. To cover the running costs of the facility, charges for the use of the equipment, imaging service and training apply (see Charges).

Guidelines for users

The microscope equipment in the CALM facility is very expensive and sensitive and thus every care should be taken by users to treat the equipment appropriately. Particular care should be taken with the objective lenses. A catalogue of Guidlines for users can be found at the following link (see Guidelines for CALM users). In addition, first time users have to carefully read and sign appropriate risk assessments as provided by the Manager of the Facility or the Administrator of the CIR.

Each microscope has a log book and we ask you to fill in all necessary details and sign for the use of the system. This helps us to log usage, track faults and provide trouble shooting if necessary.

Booking

Before you start your experiment, please ensure that you book appropriate time slots using the on-line booking system. Please indicate well in advance whether you need full assistance or if you wish to book longer time slots. Note: the unsupervised use of any of the systems is not permitted for potential users that have not been fully trained and who have not registered with the facility. You must not book any system for unassisted use if you have not been fully authorised previously by the Facility Manager or the Head of the Facility.
You might be very occasionally asked whether you agree to move a booked time slot by an hour or so. This aims to compile booked times in blocks in order to reduce unnecessary heat-up and cool-down cycles of lasers and mercury bulbs, which will help to increase the lifetime of the equipment and thus decrease the running costs.

In order to avoid ‘bogus’ (just in case) bookings, the appropriate charges are due for every booked hour, independent of whether the system has actually been used. Obvious exceptions are spontaneous cancellations due to poor conditions of samples and cells, experiments that unexpectedly have not worked etc. However, we ask you to let us know as soon as you find out that this is the case, and if you don’t intend to actually use a previously booked system.

Further assistance

If you require further assistance such as advice on sample preparation, image acquisition and operation of the equipment you may contact the Facility Manager. Please note that this extra service outside a booked time slot is also subject to booking and charging. Do not approach the Facility Manager when she is busy with a scheduled task, as this severely disrupts the workflow of the facility.

For assistance on experimental design, strategic planning that involves light microscopy and advanced image data analysis you can alternatively contact the Head of the Facility by e-mail.

Acknowledgements in publications

If you have used the CALM facility for producing results for publication, please acknowledge the use of the facility. In the case that specific members of the facility staff have provided advice or technical expertise beyond the standard assistance, we would appreciate if these could also be named in the publication's acknowledgement. If any facility staff member has contributed significantly to a publication, e.g. by providing strategic planning, experimental design, image or data analysis, writing of imaging-related parts of a publication etc, you might consider it appropriate to grant them co-authorship.

 

Last update:30 August 2017

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