Skip to Content

Cleanroom Policy

Cleanroom User Policy 

Cleanroom Equipment Documents:

Mask Aligner Standard Operating Procedure

Profilometer Standard Operating Procedure

Atomic Layer Deposition Standard Operating Procedure

New Materials Request Form


User policies and responsibilities:

  • Cleanroom Users are persons who are trained and certified to operate equipment located inside the SCIF cleanroom. In combination with the orientation, they receive additional training on cleanroom safety and cleanroom operational procedures. Before gaining access to the cleanroom they must pass a safety exam. They will also be required to take training specific to the instruments they will be using.
  • Pass a cleanroom safety and gowning exam.
  • Certification by SCIF trainers that they are capable of operating each piece of equipment they intend to use. The SCIF trainer will confirm that the user understands the operating principles of the equipment as well as the exact operating procedures before the user can be listed as a "USER" of that piece of equipment. Each piece of equipment typically requires 1 to 3 half-day training sessions before the user is ready to be certified as a "user" by SCIF trainer.
  • See section training below.
  • "Users" must follow the guidelines taught during trainings when operating each piece of equipment and sign in the appropriate logbook. SCIF users must sign in the log book BEFORE they use a piece of equipment and they must sign out AFTER they are finished with it. If several users are operating the same piece of equipment everyone must sign in the log book.
  • Safety glasses must be worn at ALL times in any wet bench in the cleanroom: photolithography and wet etching stations.
  • Open toed shoes are not allowed in the cleanroom, and legs must be completely covered (no shorts, skirts...). Exposed legs as well as nylon socks or stockings are not allowed.
  • Meet with the laboratory director once a month to review their SCIF project activities.
  • Work in SCIF only during regular hours, Monday to Friday 8:30am – 5:30pm. For work in the SCIF outside the regular hours, see section Extended Access Policy below.
  • Observe the SCIF rules on what chemicals are used in each cleanroom bay.
  • No chemicals should be stored in the pass-through.
  • Report all equipment problems immediately to the laboratory Director.
  • Equipment must be reserved using the SCIF access system, and if a user is not present at the beginning of their reserved time slot then they will lose their reservation and be charged.
  • Acknowledge the SCIF in any publication that is supported by research carried out with SCIF facilities.
  • Provide the laboratory director with PowerPoint slides and a summary of their SCIF activities for promotional purposes.


If any member of the SCIF staff (laboratory director, laboratory manager, laboratory technician) feels that any user is not capable of carrying out their responsibilities they will immediately terminate the user's SCIF access. The faculty supervisor, and the SCIF staff will then determine how to correct the situation and if the SCIF access can be restored. Depending on the circumstances of the problem, SCIF access can be suspended for 2 weeks or more. The SCIF user fee will not be refunded in these situations.


SCIF Cleanroom User policy for extended hours (Monday to Friday after 5pm) and weekend use:

Extended hours is defined as: weekends, UC Merced holidays and from 5:00PM to 9:00AM Monday-Friday.


The SCIF cleanroom regular operating hours are 9am to 5pm Monday through Friday. If any of the users (Regardless whether or not they are SCIF certified independent or dependent users) needs Operator Assistance (O.A.) on weekdays after 5pm or on a weekend, he/she needs to fill out an ‘After Hour Assist Form’ (SCIF website) 3 days ahead before scheduling their work and be approved by the SCIF Director Dr. Anand Gadre. In addition all users should provide reasoning as to why he/she does not want to work during regular business hours and specifically proposing to work after hours or weekend work with an evidence of their Supervisor’s/advisor’s written approval for them to work after hours or on a weekend. It is NOT a mandatory requirement to have a buddy accompanying you (the user) while working in SCIF after hours and/or weekends. However, SCIF highly recommends users to find a buddy who can accompany you (the user) during after hours and/or weekend operations in SCIF for safety purposes.

In case, a regular hour usage needs to extend after 5pm, all SCIF certified users need to notify and get an approval from Dr. Anand Gadre before making a decision on extending their work for after hours (unless there is an emergency or last minute mechanical problem with the SCIF equipment). Unapproved after hour and weekend operations for SCIF non certified or for SCIF certified independent users, operation will be terminated at 5pm from Monday through Friday (unless they have proper approvals) and the users will be solely responsible for the consequences for not following or agreeing to the above mentioned SCIF policy. The recharge rate for the after hour and weekend usage is the same as regular hour usage.

Users may request extended hours cleanroom access if they have no documented Procedure Violations as described in section above.


Extended hour access does not include the following equipment and processes:

a) Red Tagged Material

b) Acid Benches

c) Acids and strong bases

Each User that enters the cleanroom after hours must have authorization i.e. a fellow user may not follow you into the clean room.



Starting an External research Project (Any user not affiliated with University of California, Merced)


Make Initial Contact to SCIF Director’s office:

Email SCIF director and submit as much detail as possible about your proposed project.  Our Technical staff will contact you to discuss your project needs and to answer your technical questions. You may be referred to other members of the technical staff in SCIF who may be best suited to address your specific research needs.


Determine if you will be an On-Site User or if you will use Remote Services:
Remote service is defined as technical process steps performed by our engineering staff on your behalf.


On-Site Users only – Attend Safety Training and Lab Orientation


On-Site Users only – Attend Individual Equipment Training

For On-Site Users traveling from out of the area, we will do our best, within reason, to fit as much training into a visit as possible as long as it does not compromise the effectiveness of the training.