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Safety

In order to use the Department of Electrical Engineering undergraduate labs, you must agree to the lab rules and regulations.

You can download a copy of the undergraduate Rules and Regulations here.

Undergraduate Lab Rules and Regulations

This orientation is to familiarize you with the expectations and requirements of the UTA lab and lab supervisors. We will cover a wide variety of topics and after the orientation is completed you should have the answers to the majority of questions that are commonly asked. The lab supervisors (Stan Howard and Todd Kelley) are available any time during normal lab hours if you have any questions. We will also cover information about lab safety and permissible activities in the UTA lab environment.

Safety Regulations

Safety is our first and foremost consideration for all students, staff, and faculty while in the undergraduate labs. Safety rules will be followed at ALL times. Failure to follow the safety rules may result in expulsion from the labs.

  • THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A “SAFE” VOLTAGE/CURRENT
  • No student or GTA will under ANY circumstance alter ANY wiring leading into or coming from a standard 110V AC wall outlet. This includes the AC outlets built into the work stations.
  • Do not wear jewelry, lanyards, or anything that conducts electricity while working on a circuit.
  • Safety covers will not be removed from any equipment or gear that has them in place.
  • Fuse replacement on test equipment will only be done by authorized lab personnel or those authorized by them to maintain and/or repair equipment.
  • The lab is a professional environment, appropriate clothing will be worn at all times whenever working inside the lab itself. Appropriate is defined as clothing that will not provide a distraction to other students and provides sufficient and proper protection to an individual present in a minimal hazard industrial environment.
  • No student may work in the lab at any time without his/her GTA or lab personnel being present. Present is defined as “in the same room at the same time”. In addition, no student may stay in the lab alone at any time.
  • Students will insure that any circuit being worked on is either de-energized (including the grounding of any possible components that may hold a charge) or is a standard lab experiment that is designed to be active while testing and measurement is taking place.
  • Undergraduate students will not work on any personal projects without first clearing the work with the lab supervisors.
  • Students are expected to act in a professional manner at all times while in the lab. Practical jokes and horseplay are unacceptable in the lab environment.
  • Student will not be allowed to use the solder stations until they take the one hour solder I training class.
  • Soldering irons are HOT. Care must be taken to protect yourself and others from being burned.
  • Do NOT assume that a soldering iron has been turned off is not hot. It is possible, and even likely, that the soldering iron was just in use before you arrive in the lab. When working at the soldering stations students will not “flick” molten solder off the solder tip. Melted solder is to be wiped onto the moist sponge provided.
  • Students MUST turn off soldering stations when they are finished. Leaving the soldering irons on is both a safety hazard and could ruin the soldering iron tip.
  • It is strongly recommended that students purchase safety glasses for use when working at the soldering station or when testing newly constructed circuits. Improper circuit construction may cause catastrophic failure of components that result in flying debris.

Lab Regulations

The following regulations are required for ALL labs. These regulations are in place to provide protection for the lab equipment. Failure to follow these regulations may result in expulsion from the lab.

  • DO NOT WRITE on the work benches. They have a special surface that dissipates electrostatic electricity. Bring scratch paper to class.
  • Test equipment and lab computers WILL NOT be moved from one bench to another. Move your circuit to verify if equipment is bad. Trust us, 99% of the time it will be your circuit and not the equipment. If you suspect any equipment is malfunctioning – turn off your circuit and notify the GTA immediately.
  • Computer and test equipment cover will not be removed by anyone other than the lab personnel.
  • Food and drinks are NOT ALLOWED in the lab at ANY time.
  • Students are expected to show up for their lab class at the scheduled time. GTA’s have been instructed to secure the lab doors at 10 minutes past the scheduled lab start time. Students arriving later than 10 minutes past the start of class should report to room 148 and the lab supervisor there.
  • In general, electronic components are considered to be consumable parts (components NOT used from one semester to the next). Check with your GTA as to which parts you will need to keep for further labs. It is advisable to keep all parts at home for personal projects.
  • Jumper wires are not to be cut or trimmed. They are premeasured to fit breadboards perfectly. They are not consumable and are to be used from one experiment to another.
  • Labs are used by many students and different classes DAILY. Students are required to clean up their immediate work station after completion of their experiment and prior to leaving the lab for the day. This includes work done at the soldering stations.
  • Leaving your assigned lab repeatedly during your scheduled lab time is disruptive to you classmates and the GTA. Please keep this to a minimum in order to maximize not only your lab experience but also that of your classmates.
  • When leaving the lab for the day, please turn off ALL test equipment and lab computers.
  • When leaving the soldering station for any time longer than 5 minutes, you must “tin the tip” and turn off the soldering iron. This protects the iron tip.

Lab Security Policy

The following section covers overall lab security. It will also cover various aspects of equipment checkout and the lab equipment loan policy. Please note that a violation of this section may result in a police report being filed.

  • Students and GTA’s will AT NO TIME cause a door lock to malfunction in ANY manner. This includes, but is not limited to, taping the lock open, manipulating lock levers to cause the door to not close completely, propping the door open with chairs or other items. Students and GTA’s will also verify that the offside door is locked so that the double doors cannot be pulled open when leaving the lab for the day.
  • Students and GTA’s must check out lab equipment, audio/visual equipment, etc. from lab personnel. Removing ANY equipment from the lab without prior approval and checkout procedures constitutes THEFT and will be prosecuted as such. Equipment that is to be checked out MUST be preceded by an email from the responsible professor requesting the equipment for checkout.
  • A limited amount of tools are available for use in building projects. Some tools do not require checking out while others do. Hand tools that require checkout procedures are located inside the gated cage area in room 148. Checkout is available from 9am to 5pm Monday through Friday.
  • Lab hours are as follows: during your assigned lab hours, during your GTA’s assigned office hours, and posted on the undergraduate lab website. For access to the lab outside of these hours, please contact the lab supervisors to schedule an appointment. Note: Open lab hours are not a guarantee of accessibility. On occasion lab personnel are required elsewhere, in those circumstances the labs will not be open unless your GTA is present.
  • All students must have either their GTA or lab personnel present in the lab when they are working. Other GTA’s are not authorized to allow students (other than their own) access to the labs.

Maker Space Policy

UTA has created a Maker Space for Electrical Engineering majors to aid in the creation of design projects. The Maker Space located in Nedderman Hall room 131 consists of a print room (131A) with a PolyPrinter 3-D printer and an OtherMill Milling and PCB routing mill. Room 131B is a small shop with drill presses, a band saw, scroll saw, sander, pneumatic nail gun and various other tools you may need in order to design your projects. Room 131D has 3 Xeon processor workstations. The following section covers UTA Electrical Engineering’s Maker Space usage policies. It will also cover various aspects of equipment safety and usage.

  • No student will circumvent safety protocols in order to use any equipment in the Maker Space.
  • Students will not use any tool from the tool shop without a lab supervisor’s permission and/or presence.
  • No student will use the 3D printer or milling machine without training from a lab manager or supervision from an IEEE officer.
  • Safety glasses are to be worn anytime machines are being operated in the shop.
  • The computer workstations in the Maker Space have a higher priority for use for students needing to run 3-D modeling software programs such as Ansys, Electronics Workbench, Autocad and Matlab.
  • You must clean up after yourself in the Maker Space or you will lose your Maker Space privileges.
  • Report any equipment problems to the lab manager or email : EE_UG_Labs@uta.edu.

Internet Use Policy

The undergraduate lab internet use policy is an adjunct to the UT Arlington internet usage policy; in no way does the lab policy supersede UT Arlington’s internet usage policy. The lab policy is in addition to UTA policy.

  • All lab computers have “ROLLBACK” software installed. The computers are rebooted daily and all preceding information is dumped from the computer hard drive. Student will NOT be able to save ANY data from one day to the next on the computer hard drive. Students are stronglyencouraged to save data to removable media in order to save their work.
  • Students will NOT download ANY software from ANY source without prior approval of lab personnel. This specifically includes messaging software. This also includes software that the student has a specific license for.

Undergraduate Lab Open Hours Policy

In accordance with this policy the lab has open lab hours for students to work on their course experiments outside of scheduled lab time and the individual GTA’s office hours. These open hours are also available for students to work on personal projects if they should wish to do so. All personal projects MUST be approved by lab  supervisors prior to work. Open lab hours posted on the undergraduate lab website. Students may use the labs during these open periods as long as lab personnel are present. Open lab hours are NOT a guarantee of lab access, they are a good faith effort to enable students access to equipment as much as possible during normal business hours.