Access to the Prototyping Lab
How do I gain access to the prototyping lab?
- Any member of the Georgia Tech community is welcome to visit and use the lab during office hours if they are listed on our calendar. After hours use requires Buzzcard access, which lab is granted after attending a safety orientation. Regular safety orientations are noted on our calendar, and any staff member can schedule additional orientations on a needs-based basis. Please visit our staff page for contact information.
May I bring visitors to the lab?
- The GVU Prototyping lab policy requires that anyone who will use any of the prototyping lab equipment must attend a safety orientation. If you wish to host a "tour" of the lab (i.e., for new or visiting researchers) or to bring peers along to observe work, this is perfectly fine as long as someone who has attended the safety orientation and been granted Buzzcard access is present at all times. Additionally, while prototyping lab staff are in the lab during the office hours listed in our calendar, any member of the GT community is welcome to make use of the resources available.
May I borrow equipment/take equipment outside the lab?
- As a general rule, we do not allow equipment to leave our lab for safety purposes. In cases of special circumstance, you may submit this request form to Tim for approval. If the equipment is not returned before the end of the loan period, you will lose access to the lab and be fined for the cost of a new replacement. Please note: the lab is equipped with security cameras. Removing equipment without permission will be considered theft of GVU Property.
Why does my card no longer work? Added 9-17-18
- Access is contingent upon remaining an active member of the Georgia Tech community. If you move on from Georgia Tech, your account will lose permissions and you'll need to attend a new orientation session.
Additionally, in 2018, changes were made to the access policy which required users to reaffirm their acknowledgement of the lab rules and agree to the waiver. For user convenience, this process was electronic and detailed in an e-mail, the contents of which may be found here. If you had access prior to July 13, 2018 and did not follow the instructions in the communication, you will need a new orientation to regain access.
Uses for the Prototyping Lab
What sort of projects can I complete in the lab?
- The GVU Prototyping lab is primarily geared towards electronics and rapid prototyping. As such, most of our equipment is geared towards small-scale electronics fabrication and woodworking. We have a few tools which can be used for metalwork, however any real metalworking is best completed at one of the other makerspaces on campus.
Can I work on personal projects in the lab?
- The prototyping lab is first and foremost a resource for the researchers and students of Georgia Tech. As such, we request that any users of the lab allow research/academic projects priority access to tools, equipment, etc. When resources are available, members of the Georgia Tech community are welcome to work on personal projects, so long as these projects are not against prototyping lab rules (see below).
What rules are there for projects completed in the lab?
- This is not an exhaustive list, so make sure to ask a prototyping lab member if you have any questions. Generally speaking, projects are okay so long as: You aren't creating something dangerous (to yourself or others), You aren't creating something for commercial purposes, and You won't cause undue strain on the resources/operation of the prototyping lab. Again, if you have any question as to whether your project is acceptable for our lab, please reach out to one of our staff members.
3D Printing in the Lab
Can I use the industrial 3D printers in the GVU Prototyping lab?
- Due to the high cost of material and upkeep for these 3D printers, we require all individuals who wish to print provide a Georgia Tech project number or active SUMS billing group to charge appropriate costs. If you wish to submit a print, please use the "Request 3D Print" link above to use our submission form which will guide you through the information you need to provide. Our staff will calculate a quote for the cost of the print and will contact you if it is any different than the estimate provided in the submission process.
How do I create a SUMS Billing Group? Added 9-11-18
- Instructions for creating a Billing Group can be found in this creating Billing Groups how-to.
May I use tools without training? Added 7-25-18
- Per the rules of the Prototyping Lab, all users are expected to follow safety instructions at all times. If you are unfamiliar with the operation of a tool, you cannot safely operate said equipment, and are considered in direct violation of this rule. If you have never received training on a piece of equipment from either Prototyping Lab staff or a staff member from other, similar spaces on campus (The CoA Design Shop, The Invention Studio, etc.) please contact Protolab Staff for training prior to attempting any operation.
Working for the Lab
Are there any positions available within the lab? Updated 9-7-21
- Currently the GVU Prototyping Lab does not have regularly staffed positions, but maintains a set of student assistants based on funding and project needs. For a list of potential positions, please view the lab positions list.