Booking of devices

  1. Before using the service for the first time, online registration and instruction by one of BCF's managers are required.

  2. Instrument usage is registered in the booking calendar.

  3. The microscopes / PCs can be booked up to 4 weeks in advance for use 24h/7days (with special exceptions) daily from 0.00 to 13.00 or from 13.00 to 24.00, but not more than 3 days in a week or 10 times a month.

  4. Users can change or delete their booking up to 24 hours before start of use. After expiry of this period, the registered booking is considered binding and will be invoiced according to the time entered. Binding appointments can be released for other users on the appointment exchange. If the appointment can be partially or completely reassigned, the invoice amount will be reduced accordingly.

  5. The actual usage time from login to logoff must be entered in the user book of the respective device with date, name (no abbreviations), setup and signature to the minute. An extension of the period of use can be made if the time required for this is not occupied by another user.

  6. In urgent cases, e.g., due to malfunctions, for the purpose of necessary service on the devices or for organizational reasons, the system administrators of BCF may change or, if necessary, cancel registered periods of use. Registered users affected by this will be informed in advance. In such cases, no claims for damages may be made against BCF.

Time Exchange

Here you will find dates that have become available at short notice due to cancellations of already booked dates. The released equipment can be rebooked for the entire time or for partial times. The first-time booker bears the costs for appointments which he/she has cancelled at short notice (less than 24 hours before the booking date). If the appointment can be partially or completely re-booked, the invoice amount is reduced accordingly.

Login at microscopes and graphic computers

Microscopes whose use requires a login may only be used with simultaneous login to the system PC. The time between login and logoff is decisive for the entry of the usage time in the user book and for the billing of the usage costs.

After confirmed instruction, each user will receive a password for individual login to the system PC of the microscope or graphic computer.
The password is personal and confidential. Each user is responsible for ensuring that the password does not become known to other persons. The use of devices requiring a login under a different login than the user's own login is not permitted. This means that a logoff is mandatory before subsequent use by another user.

Operation of Devices

Frequent starting and stopping of the operation of all confocal microscopes, e.g. for inspections of fluorescence-labeled preparations, is not permitted because this shortens the life of the laser. Therefore, inspections of specimens and checks of fluorescent markings must be performed on conventional microscopes available at the BCF before using BCF confocal microscopes.

After switching off an illumination with a mercury vapor lamp, the following restarting time has to be considered: 

  • HBO: At least 30 minutes,
  • HXP: several minutes,
  • XBO: Hot start possible.
  • ColibriTM lights can be switched on at any time.

For all microscopes, observe the device-specific specifications and instructions when instructing the user!

Further image processing, visualization and evaluation of the data acquired on the microscopes should not be performed on the microscopes system PC.

When working with a microscope system, the following sensitive working steps must be observed without fail:

  1. Lower or raise the nosepiece before each change of specimen.
  2. Always and only wipe the objective lenses of the immersion objectives with lens paper after the end of the work, clean glycerol immersion objectives additionally with propanol.
  3. The exchange of objectives at the revolving nosepiece and between microscopes is prohibited.
  4. Air/water objectives must not come into contact with immersion oil.
  5. Avoid glycerin/oil running down the objectives when using inverted microscopes (one little drop is enough).

Instrument-specific specifications for operation and use of our microscopes can be adapted to the requirements by the persons responsible for the system. These and other notes and information will be communicated to the users via the e-mail address given during BCF registration and will be valid from the time of communication, even without the need to sign a new user agreement.

Specific instructions for the individual devices may also be found on information boards at the workstations and webpage. Failure to observe the instructions can lead to serious damage to system components. The registered users or user logged in by login are responsible for compliance with the operating instructions and the proper handling and operation of all devices.

No Changes to Hardware and Software

Changes to the technical configuration and basic settings of the BCF microscopes and other equipment, incubation systems and graphic computers, existing software installation, the installation of additional software, software updates or upgrades, and any type of change or addition to the hardware will be carried out by the BCF staff only. Exceptions to this are operationally necessary modifications of the LSM for the use of different sample carriers and the incubation chambers on the scanning table.

The position of the objectives in the nosepiece is fixed. Changing the position of individual objectives is completely prohibited, as is unscrewing the objectives from the nosepiece.

Any malfunction of the hardware and software, impairments and malfunctions of the microscopes, incubation systems and graphic computer must be reported immediately in writing to the representatives of BCF. Operating faults which cannot be remedied by restarting the software or the system PC must not be remedied by unauthorized persons. In individual cases, appropriate measures must be discussed with BCF representatives.

Work safety and operating instructions

Every user is obliged to know and comply with the regulations on occupational safety and the specific operating instructions applicable at the respective equipment locations.

Instruction in accordance with the §12 genetic engineering safety regulation for genetic engineering laboratory areas of safety levels 1 and 2 is provided by the responsible project managers.

When performing S2 work on the Leica TCS SP8, it must be strictly ensured that the LSM, other equipment and all operating elements remain in a state that allows operation without protective gloves at all times. Operation with contaminated gloves is prohibited.

When working with the incubation systems on the Leica TCS SP8, regulations for working in the S2 laboratory apply. On all other devices, the regulations for S1 work apply.

Compliance with the BCF Usage Regulations is essential for the optimal operation in a multi-user unit. Violations of the BCF Usage Regulations will be reminded in writing; if this is repeated, the authorization to use the equipment will be withdrawn and, if necessary, the user login will be blocked or even deleted.