Safety in the EE Lab
In order to use the Department of Electrical Engineering undergraduate labs, you must agree to the lab rules and regulations.
Undergraduate Lab Rules and Regulations
This orientation is to familiarize you with the expectations and requirements of the UTA lab and lab staff. 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 manager (Todd Kelley) is 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 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.
- Students will be required to wear a face mask at all times while in the UTA EE Labs. This supersedes overall UTA policy. If UTA policy removes the requirement for wearing a mask in the future, the UTA EE Labs may still require them while inside the lab. If you need a mask, one will be provided for you. In addition to wearing a mask, we encourage you to wear a face shield while in lab as well. The EE Labs have 3D printed face shields available free to students.
- Students must have their temperature taken using a noncontact thermometer while entering the lab. If a student’s temperature is 100.3° F or higher they will not be allowed to enter the lab and should go home immediately and monitor their health.
- The Lab Benches have been modified to isolate you from others while you perform your lab. All equipment you will need to complete the lab will be on your bench when you arrive. There will only be one student per bench.
- Before each lab, the lab staff will be using an electrostatic sprayer to disinfect all surfaces in the lab, including instrument buttons, probes, keyboards and mice. You may bring your own laptop to use if you desire.
- Your instructor may choose to communicate through Microsoft Teams in order to explain the lab. If you need assistance you can use the Chat feature to communicate to the professor.
- Some labs may be conducted at home. You will need to check out equipment from the lab at the beginning of the semester and return the equipment at the end.
- 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 ensure 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 manager.
- 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.
- Students 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 that 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 or copper 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.
The following regulations are required for ALL labs. These regulations are in place to provide protection to you and 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 or lab staff immediately.
- Computer and test equipment covers will not be removed by anyone other than the lab personnel.
- Food and drinks are NOT ALLOWED in the lab at ANY time.
- 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. All tools require checking out. Please contact the lab staff to use or checkout tools.
- 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.
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 strongly encouraged to save data to removable media or cloud based storage 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.
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 two PolyPrinter 3-D printers and two Bantam Tools Milling and PCB routing mills. Room 131B is a small shop with a drill press, a sliding radial saw, table saw, jig saw, electric stapler, electric sander, pneumatic nail gun, tap and die set 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 presences.
- No student will use the 3D printers or Milling machines without training from a lab manager or supervision.
- 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.
Undergraduate Lab Open Hours Policy
Open lab hours will be cancelled altogether during the pandemic. The lab normally 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. 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 student’s access to equipment as much as possible during normal business hours.
Location and Contacts
Deliveries: Nedderman Hall, Room 518, 416 Yates St., Arlington, TX 76010
Dr. Diana Huffaker
Professor and Chair
Dr. Jonathan Bredow
Professor & Associate Chair
Dr. Sungyong Jung
Associate Professor & Associate Chair