Laboratory work can vary widely including the types of materials, processes, and equipment involved. This page helps faculty members, laboratory managers, supervisors, and laboratory directors understand how to manage and ensure the facilities, equipment, and apparatus required are used and maintained in a manner that minimizes risks to those who use them. Select a topic below for more information.
Machinery or devices that require infrastructure change to accommodate its use. Examples of infrastructure change include:
- Secured to flooring by bolting or welding to building roofs, walls, floors, or suspended from ceilings
- Cutting holes through roofs, walls, floors, or ceilings
- Requires the extension of electrical or mechanical services for its operation
- A power supply in excess of 5 kW 120/208 V single phase or 20 kW at 600 V three phase
- Door frames, ceilings, floors or walls, must be modified to bring the equipment in
Items with the following characteristics also require infrastructure change and are considered equipment:
- Has a gross weight of over 100 lbs per square foot when floor or roof mounted
- Has a gross weight of over 200 lbs when wall mounted
- Has a gross weight of over 10 lbs per square foot when suspended from the ceiling
- Will create vibration or nuisance noise during its use
Specialized devices or instruments that do not require infrastructure change to accommodate its use. Examples include (but are not limited to):
- Heating baths
- Rotary evaporators
- Solvent stills
Building infrastructure and items that are fixed in place. Examples include:
Eyewash and emergency showers
- HVAC systems
- Water and electrical services
- Fire extinguishers
In general, infrastructure and equipment are maintained by Plant Operations, while laboratory apparatus is the responsibility of the owner.
Plant Operations (approval, installation and maintenance)
Plant operations is responsible for maintaining these types of systems. Examples of this include:
- Annual inspections for fume hoods
- Lighting installation and maintenance
- Pressure testing for autoclaves
- Repair of leaky pipes or roof systems
- Monthly inspection of fire extinguishers
Installation and Maintenance of Equipment
Installation of equipment is pursuant to Policy 22. Equipment should not be purchased or installed unless consultation and permission has been granted by Plant Operations. This policy is to ensure that the facilities required for the equipment being purchased are appropriate.
In order to request maintenance for equipment or facilities, you can contact Plant Operations by calling their 24 hour contact number at ext. 33793 or 518-888-4813.
Supervisor or faculty member in charge of the lab (Safe operating procedures and training)
Any equipment or laboratory apparatus in use must be accompanied with a Safe Operating Procedure (SOP) or a user guide outlining how the equipment should be used. Each person using the equipment or apparatus must be trained on the function and use of that equipment or apparatus. This responsibility falls onto the Supervisor or Faculty Member in charge of the lab.