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Becoming a Member of the Utah Nanofab

Interested in using the lab facilities at the Utah Nanofab or Surface Analysis and nano-Imaging Lab? Please fill out our online registration form to get started:

New Member Signup

Nanofab Cleanroom Orientation Procedures

We are excited to support your interest in using our cleanroom facility.  Our objective is to ensure you are successful in your activities.  We have learned that the following process will contribute greatly to that success and reduce the time to complete your project.

  1. Sign Up as a New Member
    1. The application can be found on the New Member Signup button above.
    2. Ensure the designated authority for your activity has approved your application.
  2. Present a Process/Project Review (this step can be done in parallel with Step 1)
    1. Prepare a description of your intended process, project, general activities, and/or needs and discuss it with our Process Review Team. The Process Review Team meets each Tuesday at 3:30 PM in SMBB 2610.  Send an email to tolsen@eng.utah.edu to schedule your presentation.  (NOTE: alternate schedules for urgent/special needs can be requested.)
      1. This discussion gives us the opportunity to better understand your needs before you enter the cleanroom.  It helps us understand any unusual materials or process steps you might be considering and how they match our capabilities.  It provides an opportunity for us to communicate feasibility, potential costs, scheduling, and additional resources outside our facility, if needed.  It also allows us to offer suggestions to increase likelihood for success and anticipate process and equipment training needs.
      2. The more information you can provide, the better we can assist. Suggested details include substrates, device structure by layer, general processing needs, and all materials/chemicals you anticipate using.  Use the Process Review Template below to prepare your presentation.
      3. Here is a list of resources that can be helpful as you develop your presentation.
        1. Process Review Template
        2. Any relative papers/projects from your research group
        3. Grant proposal that is funding your work
        4. Any other papers being used as references and examples of your proposed work
        5. UtahNanofab tool list
        6. Design a Process
  3. Preliminary Self-Directed Safety Training
    1. View the Safety and Protocol Training videos
      1. General Safety
      2. Chemical Safety
      3. HF Safety
      4. Gowning Protocol
    2. Read the UtahNanofab Lab User Guide
  4. Attend Nanofab Safety and Orientation Training
    1. This 3 hour training session is scheduled each Thursday at 1:00 pm.
    2. Items 1 – 3 above should be completed and approved prior to attending the Safety and Orientation Training.
    3. Send an email to stuart.knight@utah.edu to register for the training session.
    4. A New Member fee is charged to your account after attending the session.
    5. Since this training session will include some activity in the cleanroom, wear clothing that covers the legs, shoulders, and midriff, as well as closed-toe, closed-heel footwear. This is for your protection from the many hazardous materials in use in the lab.
    6. Schedule the Safety and Orientation Training within 1 – 2 weeks of the actual need to begin using the facility. This helps you retain and apply the information learned in the safety training.
  5. Pass the Safety Test
    1. The online Safety Test can be found here.
    2. It is open book, open website. We encourage you to find the answers.
    3. Your access with be activated after you get all the answers correct.
      1. The test may be retaken as many times as necessary.
  6. Access Card
    1. Upon successful completion of the above steps, access to the facility will be available through your UCard.
      1. Alternate cards are available for purchase to all off-campus members.
  7. Process/Equipment Training
    1. Contact the tool owner to schedule any needed process and equipment training. Click here to access the equipment pages.

Statement of a Respectful Workplace

The Nanofab Lab is committed to providing an environment that is conducive to high-quality research and learning. As such, we expect a commitment from all members of the community (students, staff, faculty, and industrial visitors) to act in a manner based on courtesy, civility, mutual trust and respect. All members of the community should be aware of the potential impact of their interactions, and strive to conduct themselves at the most professional level.

To promote a better, cleaner, and safer atmosphere in the lab, we ask all community members to:

  1. READ
    Be familiar with the lab usage and safety policy. Check the MSDS of the chemicals you are working with for appropriate use and required personal protective equipment. SOP’s are available online to familiarize yourself with the equipment you would like to be trained to use.
  2. BE RESPONSIBLE
    You are responsible for the equipment and chemicals you use, and your personal protective clothing. You are required to clean up after yourself. If you don’t know how or where to dispose of something, ask the staff. Label any chemical or experiment you need to leave unattended for any period of time.
  3. SHOW RESPECT
    Treat the equipment/experiments in the lab how you would expect others to treat something of your very own. If there is no label on the equipment/experiment, check with lab staff before disposing of it. If you don’t know how to use a piece of equipment, get trained before trying to figure it out on your own.

If you observe someone failing to follow these guidelines, please help them in a kind manner to understand the correct lab policy. Report continued misuse of the lab to a member of the lab staff.

Training

Laboratory staff provides all training on all equipment. Observing an authorized person does NOT constitute training. Only laboratory staff can authorize users on equipment. Equipment training sessions are to be held once per month. If a user absolutely cannot attend a training session during scheduled time, the user may arrange with the laboratory staff for a special session (at the technical staff rate).

Prior to any training session, it is preferred that the prospective user should have taken a formal course such as Fundamentals of Microfabrication Processing, or Semiconductor Devices (ECE/MSE 5201). In the absence of such training, it is incumbent upon the user to become thoroughly familiar with SOP’s (found on-line), and with the basic operating principles of the tool. Resources are available in the nanofab, as well as in the library.

Training typically consists of two sessions, a basic-training session and a follow-up session. The basic training session is taught first by laboratory staff. Safety precautions and proper equipment operations are described and demonstrated. Users should feel free to ask any questions during this session. The second session is the follow-up session where the user demonstrates the ability to operate the equipment competently with the user’s own substrates. Laboratory staff will provide minimal assistance to ensure the safe and proper operation of the equipment. The laboratory staff may quiz laboratory users. The follow-up session must be completed within one month of the basic-training session or the user will have to repeat the basic training session.

If the user can demonstrate the knowledge and ability to operate the equipment, the user will become an authorized user and be added to the user list for that equipment. If the user fails to demonstrate the knowledge and ability to operate the equipment, the user and the laboratory staff member will discuss the problems encountered and schedule a second follow-up session. If the user fails a second time, the user must attend another basic training session.

Some metrology tools, do not have scheduled training sessions. Contact the laboratory staff for training.

Users are encouraged to train only on equipment the user is certain to operate. All lab users are required to card swipe into the lab and will be billed at the basic lab entry rate for basic-training purposes. Users must reserve equipment for the follow-up training session and will be billed at the equipment rate. If a user does not use a piece of equipment for more than 1 year, they can loose authorization on that equipment, and will be required to complete the training on the equipment again. If a lab user does not enter the facility for 1 year, they may also be required to complete the lab safety test again.

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