Wednesday, October 1, 2014

CMMP Service Queue

Because of staffing limitations at the CMMP facility, services requiring CMMP staff may involve some delay as instruments and staff time become available. In general, services are provided on a first-come, first server basis. This rule is subject to the discretion of the facility manager according to the availability of instrumentation, staffing, etc.

The entries in italics are set as high priority, and the projects in red are either currently underway or scheduled.

Training Queue


Direct Service Queue

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Authorization Form

The CMMP Authorization form is a form to satisfy the grant compliance concerns of federal funding agencies such as NSF, DOE, etc., and is a requirement of the FSU contracts and grants compliance officers.

The Authorization form must be completed by PI's using CMMP capital equipment in advance of instrument use. This form provides budgetary information in advance of instrument use, and it sets up a Project ID that is a mnemonic for this budgetary information.  It is therefore important that each PI set up a unique and intuitive Project ID like "Smith-NSF", "Jones Start-up", etc.  The Project ID prevents users from having to actually enter Department ID, Fund, Project, CF1, and CF2 fields into instrument logs.

The authorization form also allows the PI to determine which students are allowed to use CMMP instrumentation, as well as specifically which instruments they are allowed to use.  Users not explicitly listed on the CMMP Authorization form will not be allowed to use CMMP instrumentation.  Just because somebody in your group is authorized, doesn't mean you are.

The authorization form in PDF format and MSExcel format can be obtained from our CMMP server.

Instructions For Authorization Form:

The top is PI information.

The body of the form has budget information for each grant that CMMP services can be billed to: Dept ID, Fund, Project, CF1, CF2.  All of those can be assigned to a "Project ID" as before.  As an example "Lochner NSF", "EL NSF"-- something simple our students and post-docs can remember as they will have to enter this in the logs.

There needs to be a description of the grant, and a description of the work that can be billed to that grant.  Sadly, C&G Grant Compliance wants me to turn your students and post-docs away if you don't indicate the specific tools they are authorized to use.  It should indicate which instruments can be used: "all instruments", "just AFM and SEM", etc.

The users (students and post-docs) need to be listed, and yes, it's true, they all need to sign.
The PI signs at the bottom.

Instrument Logs

As of 1 October 2014, the billing for the CMMP facility is being done by a Department of Physics accountant, not the CMMP facility manager.  This will only work if logs are prepared and filled out clearly and precisely.  The logs also must comply with FSU Contract & Grants Compliance requirements.

In particular:

User.  The "user" must be an authorized user as indicated on the CMMP Authorization form. According to FSU Contract & Grant Compliance, I cannot let users who are not explicitly authorized by their PI's to use billable research capital.  Just because your PI authorized one person in your group doesn't mean he or she has authorized you.  If you have any questions, contact me directly.

Project ID.  The Project ID has to be a valid project ID as set-up by the PI on the CMMP Authorization form.  Project ID's generally look like: "Smith-NSF", "Jones-NIH", etc.  If you have any questions, contact me directly.

Time IN/OUT.  FSU C & G Compliance wants to see a Total time used that is based on a real Time IN/Time OUT.  These must both be filled out legibly.  Do not omit Time OUT.

Total.  The Total must reflect the Time IN/OUT.  

To streamline accounting, round all entries up to the nearest hour.  As such, we will no longer prorate instruments charged hourly, but will continue to prorate SQUID and PPMS in 8 hour segments.

Thus the charges for hourly instruments will be, in Excel language: =roundup(hours,0)*(hourly rate).

And the charges for PPMS and MPMS will be, in Excel language: roundup((hours/8),0)*(daily rate/3).

Tips.  As we will assess fees for specific consumables, "1" or "1 tapping" is not sufficient.  Please indicate specifically which SPM probes are being used: e.g. "2 DNP-S".

These same principles apply to the other instrument logs.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

User Fees

User fees are assess for the analytic instrumentation.  Each instrument has a paper log where users log their time.  The log data is aggregated every month and then bills are submitted to the PI's responsible for these user fees.

There are new rates as of 1 May 2016.  Please see below.

For internal users (local FSU research community) the rates are:

  • Scanning electron microscopy (SEM): $25/hour
  • Atomic force microscopy (AFM): $20/hour
  • X-ray diffraction: $5/hour
  • SQUID magnetometry: $75/day
  • PPMS magneto-transport: $75/day
  • X-ray photoelectro spectroscopy (XPS): $30/hour
  • Vibrating sample magnetometer: $10/hour
  • Profilometry: $5/hour
  • Ellipsometry: $5/hour
For external users (outside the local FSU research community) the rates are:

  • Scanning electron microscopy (SEM): $75/hour
  • Atomic force microscopy (AFM): $60/hour
  • X-ray diffraction: $25/hour
  • SQUID magnetometry: $375/day
  • PPMS magneto-transport: $375/day
  • X-ray photoelectro spectroscopy (XPS): $150/hour
  • Vibrating sample magnetometer: $50/hour
  • Profilometry: $25/hour
  • Ellipsometry: $25/hour
Please contact Eric Lochner directly for fabrication tool fees.

Researchers with financial constraints are encouraged to contact Eric Lochner in advance to make special arrangements.

Users not logging their work, or incompletely logging their work will be charged a full unit of time, or if the duration of the un-logged time can be estimated, they will be charged that amount.

Friday, July 5, 2013


The Condensed Matter and Materials Physics (CMMP) facilities are a user research facility in the Department of Physics at The Florida State University (FSU).   These research assets include analytic instrumention, materials deposition and nano-fabrication tools allowing for a wide range of opportunities in materials synthesis and characterization.  These tools are available on a fee basis, and are available for direct hand's on use for undergraduate students, graduate students, post doctoral researchers and faculty in the local research community.  Training and consultation is available upon request, and many instruments can be configured for novel applications, so please inquire regarding any research needs.

Bulk Analytical Tools: X-ray diffraction, SQUID magnetometry, vibrating sample magnetometry, dielectric spectroscopy, and PPMS for magneto-transport measurements.

Imaging Tools: scanning electron microscopy (SEM with EDS), scanning probe microscopy (SPM).

Surface Characterization Tools: X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), scanning probe microscopy (SPM)stylus profilometry, ellipsometry.

Materials Deposition: evaporation, sputtering, UHV sputtering.

Fabrication: dip-pen nanolithography (DPN), photolithography, e-beam lithography, wet etching, reactive ion etching (RIE), ion milling, plasma etching, wire bonder, class 1000 cleanroom.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Instrument Scheduling

Analytic and fabrication tools are scheduled using an on-line calendar.  Once users have been trained they are given a login and password that allows reserving instrumentation time.  This allows users to work independently of lab management staff.  With door key codes and keys, users can work off hours according to their own schedules.  The on-line schedule is for time reservation not billing if a fee is assessed for the instruments being used.

The link to the schedule is here.

Some etiquette regarding the on-line calendar:
  1. Please do not book time using another user's account.
  2. If you are not going to use the time, please delete your booking as soon as possible.
  3. If you are going to come in earlier or later, or plan on using less time, please edit your booking to reflect that as soon as possible.  A few hours can be very valuable to some people with certain applications.
  4. When scheduling entire days of instrument, please limit your booking to three consecutive days.  If on the third consecutive day the next day is open, you can book it-- and so on one day at a time.
  5. Please do not book entire days of XRD, AFM, XPS or SEM time unless you really intend on using the instrument outside of the 9AM-5PM work day.  A few hours in the AM or PM can be very valuable to some people with certain applications.
  6. Don't book time on instruments that you are not trained to use.  Having time reserved doesn't guarantee training-- that must be arranged separately.
And the final most controversial rules:
  • You have a one hour grace period.  If you are not on site within one hour of your scheduled instrument time-- another user is welcome to consider you a "no show" and take your time.  If you are running late, please see Rule 3 above: modify your booking to reflect that.
  • For instruments that are commonly booked as entire days-- the MPMS SQUID and the PPMS-- the "day" begins at 10 AM.  
If you need a schedule login and password, or if you are having any problems logging in, contact Eric Lochner by email.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Instrument Training

Training is available for all CMMP research capital.  Since the CMMP facilities are teaching facilities, hand's on use is not only encouraged but required as the laboratory management is not sufficiently staffed to be a service lab.  FSU students and staff including undergraduate students, graduate students, visiting students, faculty, visiting scientists, post-doctoral scientists and research staff are eligible for training, including researchers at NHMFL, HPMI, FAMU-FSU COE and FAMU.  This courtesy is extended to scientific collaborators, students involved in summer programs, and regular external users.

Training is available according to need but not by demand.  Please contact Eric Lochner to be placed in the training queue.  We generally offer training in groups and a training will be scheduled where there is enough interest.  In exceptional cases, and only by advanced permission, other users may be allowed to training users in their group.

Training requires both a theoretical understanding of how an instrument works as well as practical skill and proficiency.  An outline of the training process:
  • Micro-Proposal.  Potential users are asked to email Eric Lochner a small "micro-proposal" outlining interest and need in a particular instrument or fabrication tool.  The purpose of this step is to make sure we're matching the right problems with the right tools.  When possible referrals are made outside of CMMP as necessary (e.g. field-emission SEM versus W-filament SEM).
  • Theory of Operation.  Users are required to demonstrate a theoretical understanding of how an instrument operates.  This step may include an informal Q&A or a quiz, and reading, papers or websites may be suggested for study.
  • Training.  This is the actual hand's on training which may be less than an hour for profilometry but as long as several days for some AFM techniques.
  • Practicum.  After working with the technology for some time, a practicum must be passed to demonstrate competency.  Only after this may the user be considered to be an independent and competent user.
It is suggested that prospective users don't receive training until they have samples in hand and have actual research needs.  Training is not intended to provide a demo or overview of a particular research technology.