Rooms & Labs
The Analytics Core Facility Essen occupies currently four rooms (see plan below):
Machine Room (T03 R-1 C14)
Control Room (T03 R-1 C18)
Sample Preparation (T03 R-1 C11)
Technical Room (T03 R-1 C80)
The Machine Room features seven fully equipped areas for the operation of mass spectrometers (MS) and their liquid chromatography (LC) systems. These areas feature the required power sockets and connection points for the required gas lines (N2 99.7%; N2 99.999%; He 99.999%). Each area is linked to the Control Room via internal data lines (USB, LAN, COM) This allows us to control our LC/MS systems from the Control Room. All devices in the Machine Room can be seen from the Control Room through a large wall sized window (see images below). Control and Machine Room feature two electric circuits. One is connected to the university main circuit. The second is fed from an 60 kWh uninterruptable power supply (UPS) in the Technical Room. All MS and LC devices as well as their control computers are hooked up to the UPS. In case of a power breakdown our LC/MS devices will be still operational (that is … during power breakdown measurements will go on; no sample and time loss). Currently we can bridge a power breakdown of 70 min. The necessary gases and the pressurized air for the Nitrogen generator are also supplied from the Technical Room.
Sample preparation is a crucial part of mass spectrometry based proteomics. Conditions in a regular biology lab are in most cases not suited for MS sample preparation. Just to name a few things … glass ware is often contaminated with growth media (yeast extract, BSA), the plastic ware is not MS compatible (contains plasticizers/softeners) and chemicals required for MS analysis are not available or not of the purity required. In addition, devices like centrifuges or shakers are often contaminated with media or detergents … if these find their way in the MS samples the quality of the analysis is compromised. Successful sample preparation is only possible in a clean and devoted environment. Therefore, we early on invested in a dedicated Sample Preparation room. The room feature three working spaces where researchers can prepare their samples for later mass spectrometry analysis. All devices and consumables required for sample preparation can be found in the storage and wall cupboards and are taken out when a sample preparation project starts. When the task is finished all equipment is stored back in the cupboards and the empty lab bench is cleaned.
Plan of the Machine, Control and Sample preparation room. The position of the devices and equipment is indicated true to scale: