Atomic force microscopy

Hourly rate(Consumables): 2.00 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 13.00 CHF / h

Factor: 4
Contact: Jozef Adamcik

Darkfield scattering

Hourly rate(Consumables): 3.06 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 1.54 CHF / h

Factor: 2
Contact: Dimitri vanhecke

Dynamic Light Scattering

Hourly rate(Consumables): 0 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 24.73 CHF / h

Factor: 8
Contact: Sandor Balog

Focused ion beam

Hourly rate(Consumables): 25.83 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 12.23 CHF / h

Factor: 10
Training: 700 CHF per user.
Contact: Dimitri vanhecke

Leica LSM

Hourly rate(Consumables): 11 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 19 CHF / h

Factor: 6

Training: 165 CHF per user.
Contact: Dimitri vanhecke

Zeiss LSM

Hourly rate(Consumables): 5.13 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 2.79 CHF / h

Factor: 4

Training: 135 CHF per user.
Contact: Dimitri vanhecke

Small Angle X-ray Scattering

Hourly rate(Consumables): 0 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 15.79 CHF / h

Factor: 8
Contact: Sandor Balog

Scanning electron microscope

Hourly rate(Consumables): 2.05 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 18.34 CHF / h

Factor: 4
Training: 115 CHF per user.
Contact: Dimitri vanhecke

Transmission electron microscope

Hourly rate(Consumables): 0.74 CHF / h
Hourly rate(Scientific): 22.01 CHF / h

Factor: 6
Training: 315 CHF per user.
Contact: Dimitri Vanhecke

The hourly rates calculation are defined by the SNSF. Our costs only include the eligible costs.

Eligible costs

The eligible costs are the basis to calculate the hourly rate of an instrument for academic use. Practically, the hourly rate is based on scientific support and consumables.

Scientific support

The scientific support is all the support a user requires to measure his/her sample and get meaningful results for the project. It may support to the instrument, alignments of the instrument, support to design the experiments, sample preparation advice, help with the interpretation of the data or even performing experiments for the user. This support differs for every user, sample type, project and instrument. The concept to assign hourly rates to scientific support for microscopes is based on the observation that:

  1. Each user needs scientific support (e.g. for instrument calibrations).
  2. The amount of scientific support increases with the complexity of the instrument.

Since this differs from instrument to instrument, a Complexity Coefficient was introduced by the University of Zurich and has been accepted by the SNSF. The concept is also used in other UniFr facilities. Examples of the complexity coefficient for some instruments on the AMI booking platform:

Atomic force microscope43 hours
Scanning electron microscope43 hours
Zeiss laser scanning microscope43 hours
Transmission electron microscope66 hours
Focused ion beam810 hours

These values are in accordance with other institutes, including the university of Zurich.


Each purchase of consumable is logged to our consumables database and linked to the expected lifetime of that consumable. For example, an SEM cathode emitter typically last for three years, so its costs (about 6000 €) are 2000 € on a annual basis. The annual costs of all consumables of an instrument is divided by the total hours the instrument is booked for scientific measurements. This yields the hourly consumables costs. Note: consumables bought by specific research groups (ie. not through the instrument specific account) are excluded from this calculation.

Energy, chemicals, acquisitions and other eligible costs

These categories exists pro forma in the database, but are not included in the calculations.

  • Energy is defined as the excess cost above normal energy use. This is not applicable for an instrument platform as AMI
  • Chemicals are covered by the consumables
  • Acquisitions: nothing additionally was acquired by an SNSF grant so far
  • No other eligible costs were logged