Office of Research, UC Riverside
Vice Chancellor for Research and Economic Development

Specialized University Facilities and Equipment

Major research universities like UC Riverside develop and operate a variety of specialized facilities and instrumentation to support the campus research and education enterprise. These services are accessible on a fee-for-service and availability basis.

As a service to the campus and off-campus scientific community, the UCR Office of Research is providing this portal to the following specialized facilities and equipment. Follow the links for additional information and contacts.

Available Services



Bioinformatics and Cheminformatics
Bioinformatics Core Facility Center for Plant Cell Biology
Confocal Microscopy Microscopy and Imaging Core Facility
Center for Plant Cell Biology
ENSC Science Group Instrumentation Facility ENSC Group Instrumentation Facility
Flow Cytometry and Cell Sorting Genomics Core Instrumentation Facility
Genomics/Gene Expression Genomics Core Instrumentation Facility
Mass Spectrometry Analytical Chemistry Instrumentation Facility
Microscopic Characterization (SEM, TEM) Central Facility for Advanced Microscopy and Microanalysis
Nanofabrication Cleanroom Facility Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering
NMR Spectroscopy Analytical Chemistry Instrumentation Facility
Plant Transformation Plant Transformation Research Center
Proteomics Mass Spectrometry W.M. Keck Proteomics Laboratory
Center for Plant Cell Biology
Stem Cell Core Stem Cell Core

Analytical Chemistry Instrumentation Facility
Department of Chemistry

The state-of-the-art Analytical Chemistry Instrumentation Facility (ACIF), housed in the Department of Chemistry, contains four specialized units - mass spectrometry, small molecule X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and optical spectroscopy. The mass spectrometry facility currently houses several instruments configured to provide a wide range of mass spectrometry capabilities, including a high resolution magnetic sector VG-ZAB, an Applied Biosystems (DE-STR), a Waters QTOF (Ultima Global), and an Agilent 6210 LCTOF. These instruments all have the capability to provide accurate mass measurements to four decimal place accuracy which allows molecular formula determinations to be made for any compound. Ionization techniques available include: atmospheric pressure chemical ionization (APCI), electrospray (ESI), fast atom bombardment (FAB), and matrix assisted laser desorption (MALDI). Agilent liquid chromatography equipment is coupled to the QTOF and LCTOF for analysis of complex non-volatile mixtures. The facility also houses a low resolution Hewlett-Packard quadrupole GCMS instrument (HP5989A) for analysis of volatile mixtures. This instrument has both electron impact (EI) and chemical ionization (CI) capability. A NIST library is available for data base matching. The X-ray crystallography facility has two defractometers. The NMR facility houses six high field NMR spectrometers as well as an EPR and the optical facility has a wide array of instrumentation including UV/Vis/NIR, FTIR and Laser Raman.

Director: Dr. Leonard J Mueller , Professor of Analytical Chemistry
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-2990

Bioinformatics Core Facility
Center for Plant Cell Biology

The bioinformatic technology core provides the campus research community with state-of-the-art bioinformatic and cheminformatic resources for large-scale comparative genomics, data mining, systems modeling and drug discovery. A wide range of modeling workstations, high-performance servers and supercomputers (with several hundred scientific software tools) are available for these tasks. The bioinformatic core organizes and teaches hands-on workshops on a wide variety of topics in modern quantitative biology ( An additional responsibility of the core is to actively develop research collaborations with other scientists to assist them with challenging data analysis tasks, grant writing and research publications.

Director: Dr. Thomas Girke, Associate Professor of Bioinformatics
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-2469

College of Engineering-Center for Environmental Research and Technology

CE-CERT has a variety of analytical tools for measuring regulated and non-regulated emissions from mobile, non-road and stationary sources. These tools - the Vehicle Emission Research Lab (VERL), the Heavy-Duty Engine Dynamometer, and the Mobile Emissions Laboratory - can measure the chemical and physical characteristics of emissions and provide fuel economy impacts on a variety of engines and after-market devices, additives, lubricants, and engine treatment systems. All three facilities have had their operations and QA/QC methods approved by the California Air Resources Board (ARB).

Vehicle Emissions Research Lab (VERL)

The Vehicle Emissions Research Lab (VERL), a rolling chassis dynamometer, is ARB-approved and EPA-recognized for emissions testing of light- and medium-duty vehicles. It is capable of accurately measuring vehicle emissions during dynamic, high speed accelerations and decelerations.

Heavy-Duty Engine Dynamometer

CE-CERT's Heavy-Duty Engine Dynamometer is designed to CFR specifications and has comprehensive quality assurance/control programs. The facility can be used for fundamental research in diesel emissions and advanced diesel technologies, as well as certification of alternative diesel fuels and verification of diesel after-treatment devices. In normal use, the dynamometer is linked with the Mobile Emissions Laboratory (see below).

Mobile Emissions Laboratory

The Mobile Emissions Laboratory - housed in a 53-foot tractor trailer - was developed by CE-CERT to directly measure both gaseous and PM emissions with instruments meeting federal standards during actual vehicle operations, providing a clearer picture of emissions under conditions representative of "real-world" driving.

Associate Research Engineer: Dr. Tom Durbin
Web site:
Phone: (951) 781-5794

Central Facility for Advanced Microscopy and Microanalysis

This facility serves as a research, service and consulting laboratory for microscopic characterization of organic and inorganic materials, biological tissue and minerals applying electron beam techniques. Available instruments include an FEI CM300 TEM, an FEI Tecnai12 TEM, and an FEI XL30 SEM. State-of-the-art ancillary equipment supports wide range of essential sample preparation techniques. Facility personnel provide support, collaborative assistance, training and service to UCR faculty investigators and students, as well as clients in academia, government and industry in the Southern California area. Formal academic classes in electron microscopy are also offered to UCR students.

Academic Coordinator: Dr. Krassimir N. Bozhilov
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-2998

Environmental Science Group Instrumentation Facility

The department is equipped to conduct a wide variety of research and teaching activities related to environmental and soil and water sciences.

Web site:

Genomics Core Instrumentation Facility
Institute for Integrative Genome Biology

The Core Instrumentation Facility contains a variety of tools supporting research in genomics and gene expression. The backbone of the facility is a medium throughput DNA sequencing operation, with instrumentation including an ABI 3730xl, a 96-capillary instrument, as well as a 16-capillary electrophoresis instrument from Applied Biosystems currently used for analysis of DNA fragments such as microsatellites. The genomics core supports handling of libraries for small genome and EST projects with the use of a Genetix QPIX for automated colony picking and inoculation of culture medium, two GeneMachine Hi-Gro incubators for overnight culture of bacteria in deep-well microtiter plates and two liquid-handling robots for extracting recombinant plasmids from host cells in 96-well format. Liquid-handling robots are also used in setting up the PCR reactions associated with DNA sequencing. Also available are a high-end microarray maker for spotting cDNAs or PCR products and an associated scanner with three lasers and a complement of emission filters (ScanArray Express), an Affymetrix GeneChip System (hybridization oven, fluidics station and scanner), a phosphorimager/fluorescence imager (Typhoon 9410) and a flow-cytometer/high-speed cell sorter (BD FACSAria).

Academic Coordinator: Dr. Timothy Kingan
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-3707

Microscopy and Imaging Core Facility
Center for Plant Cell Biology

Confocal microscopy, a robust technology for querying the structure and function of living cells, has found a variety of applications in the biological sciences, such as high throughput imaging of live cells. The microscopy and imaging core facility in the UCR Center for Plant Cell Biology provides a comprehensive suite of confocal microscopes, with a wide selection of special features which make it easier to navigate specimen space, and capture the most important data. Five confocal systems are available: a Leica TCS SP2 with 9 laser lines; a Zeiss LSM510 with 5 laser lines for top resolution imaging; a Meridian Insight Point real-time ocular viewing microscope; a Yokogawa spinning disc system with seven laser lines for video rate data capture; and an Atto/BD Pathway HT system for automated imaging and high throughput screening. The facility also has a gene gun, a laser ablation system, a variety of fluorescence scopes, microtomes, fluid handling robots and imaging analysis workstations.

Academic Coordinator: Dr. David Carter
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827- 2694

Nanofabrication Facility
Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering

The Nanofabrication Cleanroom, operated by the Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering, offers expertise in micro- and nano-technology fabrication equipment, as well as professionally managed use of clean room facilities. An hourly fee allows use of microscopes, fume hoods, chemical processing, photolithography, dry etching, RTA, atomic force microscopy, profilometer, parametric circuit analyzer, confocal microscope, ellipsometer, and filmetrics dialectric film characterization. More complicated equipment, such as metal evaporators, e-beam lithography and CVD furnace require specialized training and an additional usage fee. Focused Ion Beam services are also available. Deposition sources currently available include aluminum, titanium, chrome, gold, platinum, palladium and nickel. Sputter targets provided are aluminum, silicon and titanium. Clean room supplies, garments and safety equipment are also provided by the lab. Users are asked to furnish their own substrates. Located on the first floor of the Bourns Hall "B" wing, the facility is open 24 hours a day, seven days per week.

NanoFab Cleanroom Manager: Mark Heiden
Phone: (951) 827-2551

Plant Transformation Research Center
Department of Botany & Plant Sciences

The Plant Transformation Research Center is focused on efficient procedures for transforming plants, including species of economic interest to the California agricultural industry and model systems used to investigate gene function. The Center provides cost-effective access to biochemical and molecular methods utilized in the analysis of genetically modified plants. It is equipped with two Biosafety Level 2 greenhouses, a computer-controlled Arabidopsis growth facility, three tissue culture rooms, a CCD camera for luciferase detection in transgenic plants, and an epifluoresence optical microscope equipped for GFP analysis of cells and tissues, as well as additional equipment for molecular biology, image analyses, and genetic technologies. The scientific staff has extensive experience in working with in vitro plant tissue culture and micropropagation, molecular biology and plant genetic transformation techniques.

Director: Dr. Martha L. Orozco
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-2885

Statistical Consulting Collaboratory
Computing and Communications, Colleges of Natural & Agricultural Sciences and of Humanities, Arts & Social Sciences

The UCR Statistical Consulting Collaboratory specializes in statistical consulting and modeling, providing clients with customized statistical analyses to support decision-making in a variety of fields, such as survey sampling, quality control, product design, and marketing. The Collaboratory maintains a variety of software packages for quantitative/statistical analysis and employs a fulltime manager and both graduate and undergraduate students who are versed in a variety of statistical methodologies and supported software packages to perform quantitative examinations on problems of interest to industry. As a public service, the center also provides answers to relatively simple statistical questions through its "Ask a Statistician" service.

Director: Prof. Dan Jeske
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-3014

Stem Cell Core

The UCR Stem Cell Core Facility provides training, technical assistance, and services for labs conducting stem cell research. The facility has ~4,000 sq ft of laboratory space with state-of-the-art equipment. It is outfitted with three cell culture rooms (Biosafety Level II), two microscopy rooms, an analytical room for molecular biology, a room for flow cytometry, a computer work station area for analysis, an equipment room, a supply room for the sale of consumables and culture necessities, a conference room and a foyer for educational and outreach purposes. Personalized or class training in stem cell culture is offered.

Our Stem Cell Core Facility provides the following instrumentation:

Microscopy: A high content Nikon BioStation CT for live-cell imaging in both phase contrast and fluorescence modes. A fully automated Nikon Eclipse Ti inverted microscope with a deconvolution module for phase contract, color and fluorescent imaging. A Nikon Eclipse 80i upright microscope for phase, fluorescent, and color imaging. A fluorescent stereoscope (SMZ 800) with a camera for use in dissecting mice and in vivo work. A Nikon TS100 inverted phase contrast microscope with fluorescence imaging. An EVOS phase microscope with an all-in-one design for color and phase contrast imaging.

Molecular and cell biology: An ACEA Novocyte flow cytometer with 10-colors and
2 lasers for cell analysis. A CFX384 Real-Time Quantitative PCR instrument with a 384-well plate format. A Bio-Rad Thermocycler for PCR. A BioTek Epoch Plate Reader for colorimetric assays. A Lonza Lucetta Luminometer. An RNA gel imager. A Qubit Fluorometer. An Amaxa II Nucleofector. An Invitrogen Cell Countess. An Agilent Seahorse XFp Analyzer for live-cell metabolic assays.

Cell culture rooms, which are available for labs to conduct stem cell research, provide the following equipment: Five Biosafety Level II tissue culture cabinets. Four Inverted microscopes. CO2 incubators. Refrigerators and Freezers. Pipettes and culture necessities. A -80*C freezer and liquid nitrogen storage unit are also available.

Director: Dr. Prue Talbot
Academic Coordinator: Dr. Rachel Behar
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-4954

W.M. Keck Proteomics Laboratory

Center for Plant Cell Biology

Mass spectrometry (MS) based approaches have emerged as a major tool in proteomics research for characterization of cellular proteins. The proteomics technology core is equipped with state-of-the-art mass spectrometers such as Q-TOF and Q-STAR that are complementary in system configuration for high sequence coverage and can perform high throughput peptide sequence analysis with high sensitivity and mass accuracy. The MS core lab can assist researchers in studies of protein profiling, quantitative and functional proteomics, protein modifications, and cellular protein complexes. Major instruments include: QSTAR XL oMALDI MS/MS system (Applied Biosystems), Q-TOF ESI MS/MS system (Waters), LC-MALDIprep (Waters), and a 2D-gel system for protein separation (Pharmacia).

Academic Coordinator: Dr. Songqin Pan
Web site:
Phone: (951) 827-7114