Materials Science Metallography Lab


This webpage is a public resource for all users of the Materials Science Metallography Lab, or "MetLab". Here you can find the lab rules, FAQs, MSDS sheets, instrument Standard Operating Procedures, a list of contacts for each piece of equipment ("Captains"), and an interactive Supply Inventory to help keep track of consumables and let the Captains know when they need to re-stock.

Questions or comments? Talk to Professor Carter by email at


1. Cabinet Assignments and Equipment Captains

Use of the facility requires people to help take care of it. We have decided the most equitable way to do this is to exchange storage space for assistance in the maintenance and oversight of the lab. The equipment in the metallography and microscopy facility has been divided into twelve subsets; each subset will get a "Captain". Each captain is responsible for the well-being of their equipment; these duties include but are not limited to:

  • Overseeing equipment scheduling and operation
  • Training new users as necessary
  • Monitoring consumables inventory
  • Organizing spare and replacement parts
  • Generating a Standard Operating Procedure and safety protocols

2. Logging Equipment Use

We will be instituting a PHPScheduleIt-based logging system for the equipment in the lab. Once this is up and running, you will be able to schedule equipment time online and see when equipment is available. This will help avoid potential conflicts. More details to come as we working on bringing this online.

3. Cleanliness and Disposal Policy

Read this section carefully; this is your only warning. Every Friday at 5PM, I will take all consumables, samples, spare parts, etc. that have been left out or are otherwise not where they should be, and put them in a bin on top of the chemical cabinets. Every Tuesday at 5PM, I will throw this bin away. Please do not leave your valuable samples or consumables out and about; at best they clutter up the lab and interfere with others' ability to do work, and at worst, they will be disposed of. 

4. Safety and Storage Policies

This lab is not exempt from EHS standards and best practices, which means the following things apply:

All chemicals must be properly labeled and stored in the correct chemical cabinet. You may not use your group's personal cabinets for the storage of dangerous chemicals. If you have concerns about leaving anything in the communal chemical cabinets, come speak with me privately.

No storing chemicals in the hood. Only active experiments, and even then, properly label your samples/containers with your name, your PI name, and the chemicals contained therein.

For any chemicals you bring into the lab that are not already documented, please send me an MSDS so we have it on file.

Empty bottles and chemical waste must be properly tagged for disposal.

If you are wearing nitrile gloves in the hallway, DO NOT TOUCH DOOR HANDLES, ELEVATOR BUTTONS, ETC. Please leave one hand ungloved for these purposes. 

5. Lab Access

The card reader on 502 is now activated 24/7

Please keep in mind that use of this facility is a privilege, and access rights may be revoked if sufficient cause is found. Any instances of negligence, health and safety violations, or chronic disregard for the policies outlined above will result first in a warning, and then in having your lab access revoked. I can't imagine this actually transpiring, and would like to keep it that way.

6. User Feedback

There will inevitably be some kinks, stumbling blocks, and ambiguities as we work to implement these new policies. I rely on every one of you for feedback on how things are going, and advice as to how we can improve things. Please let me know your thoughts, so we can work together towards the best possible solution.