Safety procedures in the Giga-to-Nanoelectronics (G2N) Centre

All lab users must have successfully completed the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) course, available at the University of Waterloo Safety Office website.

G2N laboratory evacuation procedures

  1. Leave via designated exits and proceed to form up area located in the Davis Centre lobby
  2. Contact the University of Waterloo Police 888-4911 or 4911 on campus phone to confirm the alarm
  3. Report to the University of Waterloo Police the nature and extent of the leak/problem; a decision as to the extent of the security perimeter can be made at this time
Lab evacutation, exits and form up area

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Location of Safety Equipment

Fire extinguishers are located near the interior doors of each lab, in the service bays, in the garb room, the storage room and the loading bay.

Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) are maintained in the Garb Room on the counter near the sink. This currently occupies three 3-ring binders. Chemicals are listed alphabetically.

Safety glasses are available in the garb room and in the Etch Room (1137A) and Lithography Room (1137). Eye protection is required when working with chemicals and is recommended when using mechanical devices (wafer spinners) or when cleaving wafers. Safety glasses are also required when there is a danger of exposure to high-intensity light sources, electric arcs (e-beam sources), plasmas and laser light.

Eye wash fountains are provided beside each of the wet benches. There is an eye wash fountain in both rooms 1137 and 1137A.

Emergency Showers are located in rooms 1137 and 1137A.

Calcium cluconate cream for treatment of hydrogen fluoride burns is kept above the wet bench in the Etch Room (1137A). Use this cream according to the special instructions for treating HF skin contact. Advise the lab management if you use this cream.


Chemical protection equipment: Neoprene rubber aprons and gloves and face shields are kept in the Etch Room (1137A). These are for your protection when mixing large quantities of hazardous chemicals. It is recommended that you use this equipment whenever you are using strong acids and bases or any other highly reactive chemicals.

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General safety practices

  • Know all the safety rules and procedures that apply to your work. If you don't understand ask someone
  • Determine the potential hazards, appropriate safety precautions and proper waste disposal techniques before beginning any new operation
  • Know the location and proper use of emergency equipment (safety showers, eye baths, fire extinguishers and first aid kits)
  • Be familiar with emergency procedures (exits, alarm stations, and evacuation routes)
  • Do not eat, drink, smoke or apply cosmetics in any laboratory
  • Do not pipette or siphon by mouth
  • Wash hands with soap before leaving the work area, even if you were wearing gloves
  • Know what protective equipment is available and use the proper type for each experiment
  • Ensure that all chemicals are correctly and clearly labeled
  • Use laboratory equipment only for its designated purpose
  • Combine reagents in the appropriate order (i.e. pour water first and then acid; avoid adding solids to hot liquids)
  • Wipe up spills immediately
  • Keep sinks clean. Practice good housekeeping and clean up at the end of lab work
  • Keep aisles free of obstructions (chairs, stools, boxes, etc.). Apparatus should be set as far back on the bench as conveniently possible so it will not tip onto the floor
  • Do not set up apparatus so that it is necessary to reach through the assembly to turn water, gas or electricity on or off. Assemble apparatus so that control valves and switches will remain accessible in case of a fire
  • Confine long hair, loose clothing and jewelry when in the lab
  • Avoid exposures to gases, vapours and aerosols (USE FUME HOODS)
  • Do not leave experiments in process unattended. If you must leave equipment over night please post contact information near experiment
  • Identify shut off switches and ensure they are easily accessible
  • Children should not be in the laboratory
  • Avoid working alone at night
  • Keep laboratories locked when unoccupied. Leave doors unlocked when working in the lab in case assistance is needed

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