There are eight staffed Shared Experimental Facilities managed by or partnered with the MRL, which are available to researchers on and off campus. For highlights and general information on the facilities, please check out our brochure.
Access for On-Campus Users: Each Facility is managed by Technical Directors, who are the first point-of-contact for on-campus user access. Please click on the individual facility pages for contact information and access procedures.
Access for Non-UCSB Users: External users interested in accessing MRL-managed facilities can follow the procedure outlined on our Non-UCSB User page here for streamlined access. For MRL Partner Facilities, including the Microscopy and Microanalysis Facility and Terahartz Facility, please contact the Technical Directors directly with inquiries. Recharge rates for instruments are listed here: MRL Facilities Recharge Rates.
The MRL uses an off-campus system known as FBS by Priority Software for handling instrument scheduling and usage. The login for that system is https://ucsb.fbs.io/Anon/Logon.aspx .
TEMPO, Extensive analytical instrumentation for characterization of all kinds of materials. Training is available for all instruments. Equipment includes: a PPMS that measures DC Resistivity, AC Transport (AC Resistivity, Hall Coefficient, I-V Curve, & Critical Current), and Heat Capacity for small samples under controlled magnetic field to 7 Tesla and temperature from 1.9 to 400 K; a SQUID Magnetometer is for measuring the magnetic properties of small samples to 5 Tesla between 1.7 and 400 K, with a sensitivity of 10 -9 emu; a TGA/DTA is used for quantitative thermo analysis of a sample to 1100° C, it requires as little as 5 mg of sample; MS Accessory to the TGA for Evolved Gas Analysis; a DSC for quantitative heat capacity, Transition Enthalpy, Glass Transition, and Crystallinity from room temperature to 1400° C; an ICP for elemental analysis which measures down to 10 PPB; an X-Ray Diffractometer that can measure powders and thin films in the theta theta configuration from room temperature to 1500° C; a UV-Vis-NIR Spectrometer that measures the of transmission, absorbance, and diffuse reflectance spectrum of powder, solid, liquid, and thin film samples over a range of 220 to 2600 nm; a Fluorimeter that measures fluorescence, phosphorescence, and chemiluminescence of solid, powder, liquid, or thin film samples over a range of 200 to 800 nm; two BET Porosimeters that measure the surface area, pore size, and pore size distribution of powder samples; a Pycnometer for very precise density measurements of small solid samples.
Computing, The MRL as part of the UCSB Center for Scientific Computing (CSC) offers an array of specialized High Performance Computing (HPC) environments to support research. The CSC provides both the hardware to run calculations as well as consulting and training services to assist in the optimal use of HPC facilities.
Energy Research Facility, The MRL Materials Analysis for Conversion of Energy and Storage Laboratory provides instrumentation for measurement of properties of materials that are useful for energy storage and conversion. The multiuser facility includes all equipment necessary to fabricate solar cells and batteries from solution processable organic and inorganic materials.
Polymer Characterization, with equipment for the synthesis of polymers, and monomers (Schlenk lines) as well as polymer analysis equipment: TA Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC) Q2000 temp. -150 °C to 400 °C, (check thermal stability of your sample by TGA) Gel Permeation Chromatography (GPC) using chloroform with 0.25% TEA as a solvent (Analytical and Preparative), GPC using DMF with 0.1% of LiBr as a solvent, Two Microwave Reactors (Biotage and CEM), Two Rheometers (with the oven and the water bath), Wyatt DynaPro NanoStar DLS, Nano ITC (Isothermal Titration Calorimeter), and Gas Chromatograph (GC).
Spectroscopy, home to six NMR spectrometers, one Bruker EMXplus EPR Spectrometer, one Biolin Q-Sense E4 Quartz Crystal Microbalance (QCM-D), one Nicolet-Magna 850 IR Spectrometer with a Raman module, and one Varian Cary Eclipse Fluorimeter. Of the NMR spectrometers, one is a Varian 600 MHz SB VNMRS system for solutions and five Bruker Avance NMR systems: a 800 MHz SB for both solution- and solid-state NMR with a HCN cryoprobe for biological research, a 500 MHz SB for both solutions and solids with the hr-MAS capability for soft materials, a 500 MHz WB for solids equipped with an 1.3 mm HX MAS probe capable of 70 kHz spinning, a state-of-the-art 400 MHz WB DNP-NMR spectrometer for solids for sensitivity enhancement in the order of a few hundreds, a 300 MHz SWB with an array of capabilities from MRI, diffusion, rheo-NMR, to solid-state NMR.
X-ray facility, which houses three Rigaku rotating anode and three sealed tube x-ray sources supporting seven state-of-art x-ray spectrometers for (i) small and wide angle x-ray scattering and diffraction, (ii) thin-film characterization, (iii) in-situ powder diffractometry and (iv) small molecule x-ray crystallography. In addition, the facility has extensive optical imaging capabilities including a state-of-art laser scanning confocal microscope.
Microscopy and Microanalysis (Managed by the UCSB Materials Department)
Terahertz Facility, (Managed by the ITST) The Terahertz Facility of the Institute of Terahertz Science and Technology (ITST), is partnering with the MRL through the Materials Research Facilities Network (MRFN), and offers a wide range of one-of-a-kind and state of the art instrumentations. The instrumental capabilities commonly rely on radiation frequencies at the heart of the electromagnetic spectrum in the terahertz (THz) and sub-terahertz range.
Additionally, UCSB is a founder and proud partner of the Materials Research Facilities Network (MRFN - https://mrfn.org/ ). MRFN is a nationwide partnership of the Shared Experimental Facilities (SEFs) supported by the National Science Foundation's Material Research Science and Engineering Centers (MRSECs). The MRFN is designed and operated to provide support to researchers and experimental facilities engaged in the broad area of Materials Research in academic, government and industrial laboratories around the world.