Policies and Procedures

Before working in the facility users must be familiar with and agree to follow these policies and safety guidelines.

Operating Principles

  1. The labs are operated for the benefit of the WPI Community.
  2. The safe operation of the facilities is the responsibility of all Users.
    • If at any time you see any activity or conditions that you perceive to be unsafe in the facility you must stop that activity at once, and or report the conditions to the active lab monitor.
    • If possible take immediate action to mitigate any unsafe conditions.
  3. The primary role of the Lab Staff is to help Lab Users become proficient at making parts that the Users have designed.
  4. If you do not know how to do something, ask for help.

General Policies

  • The facilities are available for use by authorized users (Become an authorized Lab User.)
  • All users must adhere to all posted and stated placards and notices (both verbal and written.)
  • The facilities may only be occupied or used when they have been opened by a Lab Monitor.
  • There must always be at least two authorized users present if work is being done in the labs.
  • Before entering the facilities, users must always check in.

Hours of Operation

  • The Labs are available for authorized users 24 hrs per day 365 days a year.
  • Normal business hours will be present will be posted at http://mfelabs.org.
  • The maximum time a user can work in the facility(s) may not exceed 12 hours in any 24 hr period.
  • A 10 hour break for each user is required between work periods longer than 8 hours.

Who can work/be in the labs

  • Visitors -- (May work on computers and as specifically authorized.)
  • Basic Users -- (Must be a lab monitor present.)
  • Lab Monitors -- (Must be at least two authorized users in the lab.)
  • Project Space Users -- (Must be at least two authorized users in the lab. )
  • Special Task Users -- (Must be at least two authorized users in the lab.)
  • Authorizing Lab Monitors -- (Must be at least two authorized users in the lab. )

What should you wear in the labs?

  • Lab users and visitors must always wear clothing appropriate to the situation.
  • See workspace and equipment specific policies for clothing requirements.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

  • Safety Glasses are required in all lab spaces except in designated areas.
  • All users must use appropriate PPE in all situations.
  • See workspace and equipment specific policies for PPE requirements.

What users MAY DO in the labs

  • Users may work in then labs when the user is authorized and the labs are opened by a Lab Monitor.
  • Users may use hand tools and equipment they are authorized to use.
  • Machine tool use must be scheduled (Schedule.)
  • The Following machine tools require advanced approval from and Authorizing Lab Monitor before use
    • ST30SSY
    • VM2
    • MDC
    • Super MiniMill

What users MAY NOT DO in the labs

  • Users May never approach or attempt to operate any equipment in the labs if their judgment, reactions, balance, equilibrium, or ability to reason are impaired by anything, including but not limited to: medical condition, fatigue, drowsiness, medication, alcohol, and/or drugs.
  • Under no circumstances are Lab Users to attempt to modify or repair any equipment unless they have been specifically directed to by an Authorizing Lab Monitor.
  • Lab users may not do anything that is deemed unsafe by themselves or any other lab users.
      • If two users disagree about the safety of an operation or action, an Authorizing Lab Monitor must make a judgement before the operation or action may continue.
      • This judgement must be documented.

What to do if something goes wrong

  • In any emerging situation -- Take any and all PRUDENT action(s) to mitigate and alleviate the danger(s.)
    • As soon as possible:
      • Dial 508 831 5555 and get assistance if required or directed.
      • Notify the active Lab Monitor, and the Operations Manager for Manufacturing Laboratories.
    • If someone becomes entangled in a machine, hit the machine‚Äôs Emergency Stop. If that is not possible, hit the closest room Emergency Stop button.
      • If safe to do, use the trauma shears to cut free the operator.

Users working in the labs must register their project with us.

The data lets us justify our budget.


Users are required to to reserve time on equipment they intend to use and schedule it's use.

The data collected helps us justify our budget.

When you have made something in our facility take a picture of it and email it to us. If you want to, tell us about the part/project.

The data helps us justify our budget.

If something goes wrong in the lab you are required to email us and detail:

  1. what you were doing,
  2. what happened (include pictures,)
  3. what the approximate cost to WPI will be, and
  4. what you will do next time to make it not happen again.

We've used this data to create our Safe Operations Checklist.

In the event of a near miss that you participate in or observe: email us and let us know, what happened and any ideas you have to prevent future incidents.

This data helps us create and modify policies.

If at any time you see any activity or conditions that you perceive to be unsafe in the facility you must stop that activity at once, and or report the conditions to the active lab monitor.

If you have a non-urgent safety concern or question, email us and let us know.

This data helps us create and modify policies.