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Using the Facility

Access to the Facility

The OSU Microscopy Facility is open Monday through Friday, 8AM to 5PM. We are located in Suite 104 of the Venture 1 Building in the OSU Research Park, 1110 S. Innovation Way Drive, Stillwater, Oklahoma 74074.  


Access to the building can be obtained via the upstairs North entrance by using the call box to call the receptionist (201) who can then open the door for you. We can be reached as follows:  Lisa Whitworth, at 405-744-6765 or Brent Johnson at 405-744-3013


The following items are not allowed in the lab:

  • Food, drink, tobacco or pets
  • Wet/muddy shoes or boots
  • Chemicals, unless you get specific permission and training
  • Bio-hazardous (and/or select agents) materials, i.e. active or non-fixed bacterial samples (see section on Biohazards for how to handle these before bringing to the lab)

Reserving Equipment

If you need assistance to use facility equipment, you must either call or email Lisa Whitworth or Brent Johnson to schedule time.  Before calling, please go to the scheduling page on the Facility's website to check the availability of the equipment you wish to use.  This will facilitate scheduling.


Using Equipment


There are two ways to use equipment in the Microscopy Facility:

(1) with assistance from one of the Facility staff.

(2) without the assistance of Facility staff, i.e., independent use. To become an independent user, you must be trained in the use of the piece of equipment (by Facility staff) and before being allowed to use the equipment independently, you must pass a checkout procedure given by one of the Facility staff members.


Policies for Independent Use of Equipment:

Once you have been trained, you may not train co-workers.  Everyone must be trained by a Microscopy Lab staff member - cross-training of new users by existing users is not allowed.

All users not scheduling and using the instrument within 2 weeks of initial training must schedule (and pay for) an additional training session.

All users that have a lapse of 3 months or more in their usage must first email lab personnel for permission to use the instrument and schedule an assisted training session of up to 2 hours to reinforce operation skills.


Specific Instructions for Independent Use:

  1. Sign in on the Microscopy Lab Computer at the beginning of your session being sure to include your name, your department, the person responsible for the paying the charges and any consumables that you use. Sign out on the same computer at the end of your session. Please enter an account number at the time of use.
  2. If you have any problems, contact the Lab staff immediately. If Lab staff is not available, please leave a note (describing the problem) by the Lab Signing computer.
  3. Report all breakages to staff as soon as possible.
  4. Bring SEM samples to be coated at least 1 hour before session time.
  5. All sample preparation should be done before the scheduled usage begins.
  6. Do not leave samples or chemicals on lab benches
  7. Clearly label all chemicals and hazardous waste with the date, your name, and your contact phone number
  8. When you leave the Lab, please take all samples, chemicals and waste materials with you. Chemicals that originate in the Microscopy Facility may be left here but be sure to label them clearly with the name of the contents, the concentration, the date, your name and your contact phone number.  If appropriate, please leave them in the fume hood.  Before you leave, clean the area that you have used in the preparation lab and the microscope room. 


Using Lab Computers

  • Do not store your data files long term on the computers in the lab.
  • Printers and computers are for lab use and research ONLY. They may not be used for any other personal, professional, or academic affairs. 


Billing Policies

  • Bills for equipment usage, supplies, etc. are sent out once per month to the person listed as the PI on the Lab's sign-in computer
  • There is a 24-hour cancellation policy for instrument time; if Lab personnel are notified 24 hrs or more before the scheduled session, no fees will be charged.No-shows and cancellation without 24 hr notification will be charged for the entire session.  Some exceptions will be made, for example if an experiment fails but this is not known until a few hours before the scheduled time, illnesses and emergencies.  Always call lab personnel if you cannot make your scheduled time.
  • Any no-show/cancellation fee is the responsibility of the investigator. If a grant or
    contract account prohibits such charges, they should be billed to the investigator's
    departmental or F&A account.
  • Instrument time is charged in 30-minute increments. Some instruments have a 1- hour minimum time slot.
  • Assistance time is charged in 30-minute increments.
  • Billing for microscopes begins with the "log on" time and ends with the "log out" time, not with filament consumption time



 All publications containing or describing results obtained in the OSU Microscopy Facility should include the following acknowledgment: "Parts of this work were carried out in the Microscopy Laboratory, Oklahoma State University, which received funds for purchasing the equipment from the NSF MRI program."


Biohazard Handling

Biohazardous materials include all infectious agents, materials and biologically derived toxins that present a potential risk to human, animal and plant health.

Any transport of biohazardous materials must be approved by OSU’s Biosafety Officer.

Biological Safety Contact:

phone: 405-744-3203


Thank you for your cooperation and adherence to these policies

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