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New users need to sign the access policy agreement before their project commences

Sign the access policy agreement

Access Policy

All King's staff are eligible to use the Microscopy Innovation Centre (MIC). We welcome and actively encourage engagement from external users, with access granted at the discretion of the MIC Manager on a case-by-case basis.

Before using MIC equipment, new users will have to complete specific training sessions, provided by the MIC team, for the microscope of their choice. Users are asked to provide their own samples for use during training sessions.

Following successful training, users will be able to book MIC equipment by contacting the Centre. Unsupervised use of MIC equipment is only possible after additional training, and with the written approval of the MIC Manager.

Out-of-hours access
Access to MIC equipment outside of core working hours (0900 - 1700) is at the discretion of MIC staff. If imaging sessions are booked outside of core working hours, MIC staff will not be responsible for any damages arising from:

  • Equipment failure
  • User error

Out-of-hours users will be responsible for any repair costs associated with damage to equipment.

Data management and analysis
As a courtesy, the MIC will store users data for a period of 2 weeks from the date of collection. As data storage space is limited, retention of data beyond this period is not guaranteed. Data older than 2 weeks may be deleted without notice. All users are encouraged to utilise online storage options, such as those provided by King’s. The MIC reserves the right to only offer online data storage at the cost of the user.

Analysis of any data collected with MIC equipment is the responsibility of the user.

Booking limits
Bookings are initially limited to 3 hours per day. Booked sessions may be extended on the day if time is available. Longer sessions may be booked at the discretion of the MIC team.

Cancellation policy
The following rules apply for cancellations:

  • Cancellations made with 24 hours or more notice will not be subject to any charges
  • Cancellations made within 24 hours of the booking will be charged at 50% of the price of the booking. If the booked time is filled by another user, the fee may be waived
  • Unused time on MIC equipment that has not been cancelled, as detailed above, will be charged at the normal rate
  • Users who persistently arrive late to bookings, or fail to show up to booked sessions, may have their access to the MIC suspended

Acknowledgements and Authorship
The Microscopy Innovation Centre follows the King’s Core Facility Fair Publication Policy. For standard use, our preferred acknowledgement is:
“The authors gratefully acknowledge the Microscopy Innovation Centre of King’s College London for their support and expertise in this work”

In instances where the MIC team have provided significant help, the specific staff member should be acknowledged by name:
“The authors gratefully acknowledge [MIC Staff Member Name] at the Microscopy Innovation Centre of King’s College London for their support and expertise in this work”

Where significant, non-routine, contributions have been made by MIC staff, co-authorship of the responsible MIC staff member is expected on publications using data or developed procedures.

Additionally, as much of the MIC equipment is novel techniques custom-built by other researchers, reference to equipment-specific publications should be included in the main text of articles/talks. Specific references for each microscope can be found in their associated User Policies.

For other research outputs, such as posters and presentations, please include the MIC in the acknowledgements section, or where appropriate, on figures containing MIC data.
“Data collected using [instrument name] at the Microscopy Innovation Centre of Kings College London.”

When a publication is being prepared, please inform the MIC, and allow us to contribute to the manuscript where appropriate e.g., specific descriptions of equipment, data collection and analysis methods, etc.

Once papers are accepted, please inform the MIC Manager, and provide the article DOI for recording on our metrics.

More information on the Fair Publication Policy can be found on King’s Governance Zone

Other Rules

  • Users are prohibited to train others to use any MIC equipment. Non-users may only access MIC laboratories with the prior consent from MIC staff.
  • Modifications to MIC equipment, although welcome and encouraged, should only be performed with the written permission of, or by, MIC staff.

Health and Safety

The MIC strives to provide a safe working environment to all its users, visitors, and staff. Before access is granted users are required to undertake a short safety induction, which must be repeated every 12 months. Any safety concerns or questions can be directed to the MIC manager.

Red safety folders are present in MIC spaces for more details and information. These will be shown to you during your induction.

Laser Safety
The MIC operates Class 3 and Class 4 laser systems. Our microscopes are designed to be 'enclosed systems', thus reducing the risks associated with their use. However, no system is fool proof and there are still risks associated with laser use. Therefore, all MIC users are required to have completed the KCL basic laser training module on Workrite to understand the risks associated with laser systems.

Additionally, if in agreement with MIC staff your project requires you to a) modify equipment in anyway, or b) construct/maintain equipment within the MIC, you need to have also completed the advanced laser safety training. Talk to the MIC team for more information on laser safety training.  

Chemical Safety
Cleaning solvents (ethanol, etc.) and other chemicals are present within the lab. For each chemical product supplied by the MIC, a material safety data sheet (MSDS) is available . Users bringing their own chemicals should notify MIC staff first and have any necessary safety information (such as a MSDS) readily available.

Compressed CO2 gas cylinders are present in the MIC labs. They are installed to the necessary requirements, but still present a hazardous material. 

Biological Safety
It is the users responsibility to ensure that samples or other biological materials are transported, stored, and disposed of correctly. Any safety issues must be reported to the MIC team before bringing samples into the facility.

MIC use of user data (optional)

The MIC often presents at scientific meetings & conferences, group/department seminars, and in other scientific communications, about our facility & microscopes, as well as research projects that we have contributed to. In these presentations we use real user data to showcase the abilities of our microscopes, as well as the varied research areas in which we operate.

The MIC will never use data without permission and will always acknowledge the user(s) and PI when using the data or discussing research projects.

Please ask a MIC team member for more information if you’re unsure.