College of Science and Engineering

Access rates and conditions

College policy on use and cost of access to Advanced Microscopy Facility

In order to optimise efficient use of the facility, increase fairness, transparency, manage demand and reduce administrative workload, this page provides an outline of the availability and charges for access to the AMF (approved by CSE Research Committee 15/07/19).

‘A session’ is 4 hours; a morning session and an afternoon session are available each day. Otherwise, hour slots will be available for users.

For use of the AMF that falls outside the circumstances outlined below, please discuss your requirements with an AMF technician.

Investigators with UKRI funding

  • Amount of time should be allocated at time of grant application (form required and/or LUCRE amendment to remind PI’s to consider adding technician time for projects with heavy AMF use).
  • No charge at point of use up to 30 sessions; thereafter, discuss likely continued use.
  • Considered priority users (see below). Please discuss with the AMF technician so that they can manage the bookings

Externally funded research (non UKRI) within CSE, and users from CLS and external users from other UK Institutions

  • Should be costed into the grant as £40 per hour for training and £30 per hour after that (note CLS users will be charged to DDF)
  • Considered priority users (see below). Please discuss with the AMF technician so that they can manage the bookings

Proof-of-concept work or research without external funding

  • Two sessions free per annum, followed by PhD charge rate (see below) - this comes from investigators DDF.

PhD students (externally and internally funded)

  • £30 per hour (training)
  • Then £12.50 per hour
  • Students without RTSG, supervisor pays at same rate
  • AMF technical staff will gauge whether use is efficient and necessary and may set limits
  • PhD students currently in final 18 months with little remaining RTSG to discuss requirement of time with AMF technician

Teaching, including PGT

  • Only certain SEMs will be available.

No charge up to:

  • Geology ~25 days (if Hitachi is not working)
  • Engineering ~35-40 days
  • Chemistry ~35 days
  • No UG use of Zeiss without Tom Knott (AMF technician) being present

Priority users

Priority user ‘slots’ will be made available to reduce waiting time to use facilities. If these slots are not used by priority users they will be made available for other users.


The Advanced Microscopy Facility (AMF) is available to University staff and researchers, and postgraduate and undergraduate students working on authorised projects within the College of Sciences & Engineering. It is also available to researchers external to the College and University, including commercial ventures.

Projects can be undertaken:

  • By the project initiator, where the required instrument training will be provided.
  • In collaboration with staff in the EM Facility.
  • By staff in the EM Facility after discussion of requirements with the project initiator.

Initiation of projects

All projects should be discussed in advance with the Centre Manager or Experimental Officer who will be able to offer advice on appropriate methodology and arrange delivery of samples / facility access.

Contact details found below.

Submission of samples

Please consider your samples specific health hazards, and review risks with AMF staff prior to sample submission, providing relevant risk assessment and COSHH information where appropriate. Acceptance of such samples will be at the discretion on the facility staff.

Don't delay your publication! Please consider all necessary controls required for reliable interpretation of results. Facility staff are happy to discuss appropriate control parameters at project initiation, and are not responsible for omission of controls that may be requested by reviewers at a later date

Participation of the user in the examination of samples is encouraged, particularly where decisions based upon the investigators scientific knowledge of the system under study are involved.

Publication recommendation

Facility staff will be pleased to assist users in preparation for publication of results obtained within the AMF, and invite authors to review methods and results with them prior to manuscript submission

Where results generated within the AMF are included in a publication, we request acknowledgement as follows:

  • Where there is significant scientific input, including development of experimental procedure or interpretation of results, we request the AMF staff member in question is included as co-author.
  • Where AMF and/or staff have provided a service, we request the authors acknowledge use of the University of Leicester Advanced Microscopy Facility and name of AMF staff member when appropriate.
  • Where work is carried out independently, or AMF staff are co-authors, we request acknowledgement of the University of Leicester Advanced Microscopy Facility.

For further information on access to any of the instruments please contact

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