General policies

  • No food or beverages are permitted in the laboratory.
  • There is no ventilation hood in the lab: any solvent used must be approved before beginning work.
  • No modifications can be made to equipment hardware or software without the consent of the staff.


  • Training is based on ad-hoc policy, according to schedule and staff considerations. Self-use can be expedited by learning about operating the equipment from within your group.
  • A full course in SPM is offered once every two years at the Feinberg graduate school, fall semester theory, spring semester lab.
  • AFM probes are charged separately from lab costs. Independent users can generally buy probes from the laboratory staff at reduced rates.

A guide for new SPM Users

  • Our instruments are operated either as a service or independently as a self-service.
  • For service operation contact the laboratory staff to schedule an appointment. You will be expected to provide information on the type of sample, what you are interested in investigating, and general details about this measurement in the context of your research.
  • For independent work, you will need to arrive with some basic knowledge about SPM obtained by reading and if possible, sitting in on some sessions with a knowledgeable group member and/or taking part in sessions with lab staff. Your first session(s) will be together with the lab staff and you will process the data. After sufficient training you can begin independent work, under the supervision of the staff. Progress to fully independent work will be according to your individual progress, as judged by the staff.
  • For general information on SPM