About the Microscopy Alliance

Stack of booksmicroscopy : “the use of or investigation with a microscope” (Merriam-Webster)

alliance : “an association to further the common interests of the members” (Merriam-Webster)

Finding information about shared facilities at the University of Arizona can be difficult. The Microscopy Alliance is a collaborative effort to make information about the University’s microscopy core facilities more accessible to users.

I would like to add my equipment to this site. Are there specific guidelines?

Thanks for being interested. We've actually done a good deal of thinking about what we will and will not list on this site. We have modified the core facility definitions originally created in 2009 by the College of Medicine Bioinstrumentation committee. The kinds of microscopy equipment/facilities we intend to list here can be described as:

  • OPEN ACCESS - serves users within any College, Department, or Center within the University. Priority for service is on a "first come, first served" basis and the fee schedule is uniform.
  • PRIORITIZED ACCESS - primarily serves users from within a specific College, Department, or Center. If necessary, the priority for service is for College, Department, or Center members, with others being served as capacity is available. Physical access to the facility may be limited for “non-priority” users outside of normal work hours. The fee schedule is uniform, although the supporting unit may choose to offer a direct financial subsidy to its members.

Most (if not all) of these facilities charge fees for equipment time or for providing specific services. To be included on this site, these fees are expected to be published and in compliance with Federal requirements (see: footnote).

Hopefully it is clear that we are looking for facilities/equipment that will be broadly and easily accessible to the UA research community. We do not plan to include equipment/facilities that restrict access to members of one organizational unit (e.g., Department, Center, PPG) or are only available to collaborators.

What if my facility has a microscope to offer, but microscopy is not central to our facility's mission?

We are aware that some of the facilities listed here will have a microscope as only one component of the services that they provide. We do not have a problem with this, our goal is to introduce the UA research community to the broad range of microscopy resources that are available on campus. That said, we have no plans for listing facilities that do not include access to a microscope. Facilities on this site will have opportunity to briefly mention their other services (and include a link to their website), but the only equipment we plan to list here are the microscopes.

How do I get started?

Send us an email using the Contact form. We will give you more details.


Just one so far and it is regarding Events that can be listed on this website.

The Microscopy Alliance - steering committee:

How long has the Microscopy Alliance been around?

This site was launched on 10/17/2013.

Footnote: Office of Management and Budget circular A-21 is a complicated document that covers how institutions like the UA can bill Federal grants. While the circular can be confusing, the NCRR and NIH have a frequently asked questions document “FAQs for Costing of NIH-Funded Core Facilities” (05/08/2013) that answers many common questions.

​* Mr. Cromey would like to acknowledge the financial support for his time spent on this project provided by the Southwest Environmental Health Sciences Center, the University of Arizona Cancer Center, the Arizona Research Labs, and the Department of Cellular & Molecular Medicine.

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