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Lab Access and Training

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The Sample Prep Lab is located in the sub-basement of the Mitchell Earth Sciences Building. Hours of operation are from 9 AM - 5 PM, Monday through Friday, with the Laboratory Manager onsite during these hours to provide procedural assistance, training, and maintenance. Sample Prep Lab users must complete all required training before gaining access to the lab rooms and/or equipment. All lab users are required to reserve a work session in advance. Read the sections below for more information. 


All users must receive training by the Laboratory Manager only, not by a peer, advisor, or other staff member. The laboratory rooms contain hazardous machinery and chemicals. The Sample Prep Lab is very concerned with safety and minimizing sample cross-contamination. Training is a multi-step process, outlined below. Laboratory users must complete two STARS training courses, review the Chemical Hygiene Plan, and complete a lab room specific safety training before gaining access to the Sample Prep Lab spaces. For access to equipment, laboratory users are required to complete specific equipment training. Contact the Laboratory Manager well in advance of your project start date to accommodate time for the training process.

STARS Online Training: 

Laboratory users must complete online training via Stanford Axess STARS learning courses. PDFs of Certificates of Completion must be emailed to the Laboratory Manager for the following courses:

  1. General Safety & Emergency Preparedness (EHS-4200)
  2. Chemical Safety for Laboratories (EHS-1900). 

Register for STARS courses via the Stanford Axess Portal. Emailed Certificates of Completion must have the following naming convention or they will not be accepted: EHS-4200 General Safety First Last and EHS-1900 Chemical Safety First Last.

Document Review: 

All laboratory personnel are required to review the Stanford University Chemical Hygiene Plan prior to scheduling a laboratory specific safety training with the Laboratory Manager. The available Sample Prep Lab Manual also contains safety and OSHA employee documents for laboratory users to review.

Lab Room Specific Safety Training: 

All laboratory personnel must attend the lab room specific safety training prior to gaining access to each Sample Prep Lab space. The lab room specific safety training will educate users on specific hazards, appropriate personal protective equipment, and emergency procedures specific to that room. The user must complete and sign the lab room specific safety training document and personal protective equipment assessment before they can commence work in the lab. The Laboratory Manager will then coordinate with the Facilities team to grant the new lab user ID card access to that room, please except access to be granted up to three days after the training. 

Equipment Specific Training: 

Laboratory users are required to complete an equipment specific training, which is usually completed at the same time as the lab room specific safety training. Even if a laboratory user has past experience with a piece of equipment or procedure, they must complete equipment training as Standard Operating Procedures may differ between various institutions and facilities. Failure or refusal to complete these training sessions will result in denial of or loss of access to the laboratory room.

Completion of the training does not necessarily guarantee access to the equipment. During the training, the Laboratory Manager will be assessing the laboratory user’s ability to perform the tasks carefully, attention to cross contamination, and their concern with safety. If the Laboratory Manager feels that the user is not ready to work on a piece of equipment, the Laboratory Manager has every right to refuse that laboratory user access to the equipment, chemical, or space. 

Rock Crushing Equipment Medical Testing:

At present, the rock crushing equipment (BICO Braun jaw crusher and BICO Braun disc mill) produce levels of silica dust above California OSHA accepted levels. As a result, laboratory users interested in rock crushing must complete additional steps with EH&S per California OSHA rules:

  1. Complete medical questionnaire
  2. Fulfill medical clearance appointment
  3. Attend respirator fit test
  4. Complete respirator use training & quiz

Laboratory users interested in rock crushing must wear dust respirators (‘rubber’, with P100 cartridge) at all times when rock crushing. Please reach out to the Stanford University Occupational Health Center at (650) 725-530 to schedule the medical clearance, respirator fit test, and respirator training. 

Access and Scheduling

The Sample Prep Lab uses the online Agilent iLab scheduling system for laboratory equipment reservations. Laboratory users will need to complete free registration, ensuring that they are added to their Principal Investigator's lab group, and email the Laboratory Manger after they have done so. Following registration and the training outlined above, the laboratory user will be given reservation access for the equipment they have been trained on. 

Laboratory access is dependent upon training and experience, and laboratory users may either work only during regular working hours (9 AM - 5 PM, Mon - Fri) or get access to extended working hours (6 AM - 11 PM, Mon - Sun). Extended working hours are granted to users who have demonstrated during training that they will follow laboratory rules and complete procedures responsibly and safely. These extended working hours may not be available for all procedures, and may vary slightly by procedure. 

Laboratory Communication: Primary communication is handled through an email distribution list. Laboratory users will be added to this list once laboratory access is granted.