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Core Facilities



Facility Policies

It is our service as core facility to develop and maintain facilities equipped with high quality imaging instruments and to help researchers to concentrate on the science. In order to make using the core instrument as accessible, convenient, and fair as possible for everyone, it is necessary for all users to follow some policies and rules. However, some exceptions will be allowed for a specific project after consulting with the core staff. We appreciate your cooperation.

General policy

  • Before you use any instrument in the facility for the first time, you need to have a consulting tour and discussion with the core staff.
  • New users must submit an account form for approval and approved users will have a user account for the specified equipment.
  • As one of the core facility aims is to encourage learning instrument and self-use, training is highly recommended. It is also the most cost-effective way.
  • If you publish work done on the imaging core instrument and service, we appreciate your acknowledgement of the core service with a statement like “This work has been supported in part by the Lisa Muma Weitz Microscopy Core Laboratory at University of South Florida College of Medicine.”

Booking and Billing

  • Reservation of the instruments before use is required. The billing is based on the length of occupation time, which is figured out from the reservation and the actual log-in and out time. Please make sure to write down the log-in and out time on the log book. It also helps to track the usage of instrument components.
  • Please let us know in advance if you won't be able to use on the time you reserved, so other users can use them. If you fail to do so, you will be still billed for the reserved time and may lose the right to reserve schedule for instrument use in the future.
  • The maximum time for a session a day is 4 hour, with exception for specific conditions.

Instrument Use

  • Check the equipment for any damage or malfunction and notify the core staff or on the log book.
  • If you are not sure how to operate the instrument even after training, ask the core staff for assistance and advice.
  • Wipe off any residual immersion oil or dust from the microscopic lens only using lens paper provided.
  • Clean up the coverslip of your sample slide with Kimwipe or cotton Q-tips moistened with 70% ethanol or Windex.
  • Use the correct immersion media (dry, oil, or water) for each lens you use. If unsure, ask the staff. Apply a minimal amount (~1 drop) of immersion media carefully without touching the lens with the applicator. Clean immersion media from lenses with a dry lens paper every time you change slides.

Image Data

  • Users save data only in a user folder specified by the core staff. Please be careful not to manipulate other users’ data.
  • The hard drives in the computers connected to the microscopes have limited capacity and filling up the hard drive often slow down the imaging process and computer performance. It is highly recommended to transfer your data to CD or USB flash memory (check virus please).
  • The data stored in the hard drive for more than a month will be deleted in a regular basis. Also in case of memory shortage, data older than a week will be deleted.
  • If you need proprietary software to manipulate you image data obtained from a specific instrument, the core will provide the light version of the software.

User Fees

Instrument USF Community Non-USF
Arcturus XT Laser Capture Microdissection $25 /hr $50 /hr
Leica SP2 Confocal microscope $30 /hr $60 /hr
Olympus FV1000 MPE microscope $32 /hr $64 /hr
IR laser use for Olympus MPE $10 /hr $20 /hr
3i Spinning Disk Confocal Microscope1 $30  /hr $60  /hr
Olympus BX53 Digital Microscope $10 /hr $20 /hr
JEOL Transmission Electron Microscope $32 /hr $64 /hr
JEOL Scanning Electron Microscope $30 /hr $60 /hr
EDAX $10 /setup $20 /setup
Critical Point Drier $10 /run $20 /run
Sputter Coater $10 /run $20 /run
Tomography $10 /setup $20 /setup
Cryostat $7.50  /hr $15  /hr
Ultramicrotome $10  /hr $20  /hr
Diamond knife $10  /hr $20  /hr
Cell culture chamber $20  /setup $40  /setup
Imaging analysis $3  /hr $6  /hr
Full service (Microscopy) $75 /hr $150 /hr
Assistance (Microscopy) $35  /hr $70  /hr
Light Microscopy and Electron Microscopy Sample preparation2 $30  /hr $60  /hr
Electron Microscopy sample cutting $35  /hr $70  /hr
Training / Consultation $25 /hr $50 /hr
Supplies Cost
Arcturus LCM CapSure Macro Cap $6 $10
Arcturus LCM CapSure HS cap $11 $13
Arcturus LCM PEN membrane slide $7 $11
Other materials Actual cost + 20%

  • Each service is rounded up to the nearest half-hour, each half hour of service = ½.
  • This fee schedule is for the USF community including users from Moffit Cancer Center and VA hospital. 
  1. Long-term time-lapse experiments done during off-time (7:00PM~8:00AM) will get %50 reduced rate.
  2. Electron Microscope sample preparation (1~6 samples) usually takes 6 hours, so the minimum charge would be $180.