Equipment access rules

last updated: 2009-10-09

Rules to access and use the equipment available at the 3B’s Research Group
3B’s facilities will operate and function based on the core philosophy of open-access, hand-on training, collaboration and assistance. However, the following regulations will apply:

The equipments available at the 3B’s Research Group can be used by internal and external users following the specific rules (e.g. prior authorization, proper training, set-up of user account, fee payment).
Internal Users
Internal users are staff (professors, post-docs, graduate students, technicians, other researchers) belonging to 3B’s Research Group.
External Users
Externals users can be researchers at the nearby departments or academic institutions and related industrial companies.
The use of equipments at 3B’s facilities can be done by qualified individuals (trained users only) or with technical assistance by a 3B’s Tech Specialist.
In order to use the equipment, it is necessary to fill out an account application form for the proper services to set-up an user account (application form with user information: e.g. user name, institution/department, User ID, password, billing details). An User ID and password will be necessary to reserve time on-line and to log on to the instrument.
Following account creation, users must attend a training session on the proper equipment(s). Regular training sessions and short courses will be offered by 3B’s personnel.
Training by 3B’s authorized personnel is a necessary pre-requisite for equipment use. The training process may include the following steps:
•Instrument use Guides
A list of instrument guides is available for potential users for reading and printing in order to provide useful material for the training sessions. These instruction manuals are not meant to substitute formal training, but rather to complement it.
• Hand-on Training
The 3B’s staff will ensure proper training to the users by arranging a training session for specific equipment.

Reservation policies
The reservation of equipments can be made through an on-line manager software or using web based calendars (system is being implemented) to insure that the equipments are available at the desired date and time. Authorized users can access to equipment following the procedure:
1. Fill out the application form and apply for a user account. These forms will be available soon.
Prior to access to any of the facilities, application must be approved by the facility manager.
2. Attend the relevant training session on the specific instrument
All users are required to attend training sessions before they are authorized to run any instrument by themselves.
3. Reserve a specific instrument and operate the equipment
All users must book reservations in advance. Depending on the equipment, users may not book more than 5 consecutive hours.
4. Obey the facility and equipment rules
All users need to follow general good practices and the specific rules for each equipment as described in the equipment manual.

The equipment can be used on a fee per use basis. The fees are based on the type of user (internal or external) user experience (Inexperienced and Experienced) and need of technical assistance. Qualified staff can provide certain analysis services upon request (e.g. by companies).
Each user upgrades to a higher level of experience (lower fee rate) after accumulation of certain usage time for each individual instrument.
Training, tech assistance, certain supplies are charges additional to instrument use.
A list of prices for the usage of equipments, billing forms will be available soon at the 3B’s website.

Publications using 3B’s facility equipments
Acknowledgement statement
In order to support the 3B’s facilities, all users are asked to acknowledge the institutions that fund 3B’s facilities on all communications, papers and presentations where data from 3B’s facilities equipment is used. Alternative forms of acknowledgement are acceptable as long as funding agency is acknowledged. When you publish and have used our facilities in your research work, please credit along the following lines:
   We thankfully acknowledge the use of equipments in the 3B’s Research Group facilities at University of Minho.
If you have used equipment marked with * or **, please use the following text:
The XXXXXXXXXX work was performed in the 3B’s Research Group facilities at University of Minho using equipment that was supported by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) through the National Program for Scientific Hardware Renewal (PNRC).


Management and maintenance of equipment
3B’s Research Group is responsible for the management and maintenance of the equipment. Responsible for each equipment have been appointed ant these persons are in charge for making all decisions on user's ability to use instruments independently.
Lack of user skills or signs of negligence will lead to downgrading.
Equipment maintenance will be made continuously according with the instrument manuals.
The maintenance costs will be supported by the utilization fees and from other funding schemes.

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