Cost Estimates

Contact OCEM staff to help determine the likely costs of your project. The final cost is dependent upon many factors such as:

  • Good planning (knowing what to expect before starting the investigation).
  • Knowing your sample (the time taken to find the information you are looking for - often under-estimated).
  • The number of samples you prepare at any one time (very important).
  • If you become distracted by new questions as your investigation proceeds.

  • If you are a student you may want to consider applying for EM Student Research Award which grants students up to 15 hours of free microscopy time.

    Confocal Microscopy and ÁCT Projects

    See http://occm/equipment-occm.html for confocal costing details.

    Electron Microscopy Projects

    The OCEM operates under a club fee funding system in which contributing departments pay an annual fee (depending on their level of usage) for a year in exchange for no charge for technical support and equipment usage at significantly reduced rates. For more information on how your department can become a club member contact Allan Mitchell at

  • Materials and consumables
  • Technical support cost
  • Microscope Usage
  • SEM Preparation equipment
  • TEM Preparation equipment
  • Ultramicrotomy
  • Imaging Computers

  • Materials and consumables

    Electron microscopy chemicals and materials will be charged to users at cost to the OCEM (freight and customs included). A small percentage increase will be added to recover the cost of non-recorded consumables such as protective gloves, paper towels, disposable pipettes etc.

    Technical support
    Staff and students from club member DepartmentNo charge
    Staff and students from non-club member Departments and externally funded users$80 per hour
    Commercial Users$200 per hour

    Note: Technical support includes protocol development; initial training of new users and advanced training of existing users; undergraduate practical sessions for all University of Otago departments except club funding participating departments. It does not include initial consultation about a new project, either internal or external investigator; the first 30 minutes of each consultation with regard to technical advice or problem solving; equipment maintenance and repair time; centre housekeeping and health and safety duties; professional development time of Centre staff; development of new techniques; general problem solving activities; community and promotional activities.

    Microscope UsageClub member rateNon-club member and external rate
    Philips CM100 TEM$60 per HT hour$120 per HT hour
    JEOL JEM-2200FS Cryo-TEM$60 per HT hour (plus LN2 used)$180 per HT hour (plus LN2 used)
    JEOL 6700 FEG SEM$60 per HT hour (plus LN2 used)$180 per HT hour (plus LN2 used)
    Zeiss Sigma FEG SEM$60 per HT hour (plus LN2 used)$180 per HT hour (plus LN2 used)

    SEM Preparation equipmentClub member rateNon-club member and external rate
    Bal-Tec Critical Point Dryer$20 per run$60 per run
    EmiTech Sputter Coater$25 per run$75 per run
    Alto Sputter Coater$10 per run$30 per run

    TEM Preparation equipmentClub member rateNon-club member and external rate
    Baltec 060 (F/F)$35 per run*$105 per run*
    KF80 (cryostabilisation)$25 per run*$75 per run*
    AFS (cryosubstitution)$25 per run*$75 per run*
    Edwards E306A (coating unit)$12 per run**$36 per run**
    Lynx Automatic Processor$20 per run**$60 per run**
    Microwave processor$10 per run**$30 per run**
    Automatic grid stainer$2 per grid$6 per grid
    Leica IGL Imuunostainer$20 per run**$60 per run**
    Wescor 5500 Osmometer$5 per session$15 per session

    UltramicrotomyClub member rateNon-club member and external rate
    Diamond Knife usage by OCEM staff$15 per block$45 per block
    Diamond Knife - rental$15 per block$45 per block
    Ultramicrotomy$20 per hour$75 per hour
    Cryoultramicrotomy$20 per hour*$75 per hour*

    Imaging ComputersClub member rateNon-club member and external rate
    $0 per session$0 per session

    * plus LN2 or propane used; ** plus consumables or chemicals used.

    For account enquiries contact Allan Mitchell at or Lilly Yu at