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Manager of Analytical Services and Lab Safety

Department: Chemical Engineering Effective Date: January, 2009

USG 10

37.5 hr/wk

Reports to: Chair

General Accountability

This position is accountable to the Department Chair for the provision of analytical and general chemistry services for the Department of Chemical Engineering and funded external research interests.  The position is also accountable to the Chair for the provision of laboratory safety services.

Nature and Scope

The position exists primarily to provide analytical chemistry services for graduate and post-doctoral research in the Chemical Engineering Department as well as funded external interests.  Central to this function is the Chemical Engineering Analytical Services Laboratory.  The incumbent is required to maintain this facility and all aspects of its operation including: training of researchers and students in the use of analytical equipment; instrument maintenance; instrumentation purchasing; analysis and reporting; quality assurance and control; method development and validation; scheduling; promotion of services; and supervision of casual technicians.

The manager will be required to produce high-quality publishable analytical data that may come under the direct scrutiny of experts from outside the Department. The position also requires the incumbent to collaborate with various researchers on ongoing projects and to tailor services to clients’ needs.

The incumbent is required to effectively communicate scientific information in a clear and precise manner.  He/she must be able to educate clients on the need for various analytical protocols that are essential to the production of quality results.  The position requires an individual with a solid background in general and analytical chemistry as well as an appreciation for and an understanding of the statistical nature of chemical analysis.

With the approval of the Department Chair, the incumbent sets the price schedule for the facility, ensuring that operating and replacement costs are recovered.

An essential component of Chemical Engineering is safety awareness.  Due to the nature of chemical research that is conducted within the department and the potential for accidents to occur, the position also provides in-house safety services for graduate and post-graduate work.  This requires the incumbent to keep abreast of developments in the areas of laboratory safety and government legislation.  He/she must work in conjunction with the University Safety Office and attend Faculty of Engineering safety meetings and Safety Office training sessions.  The incumbent also participates in the Department Safety and Space Allocation sub-committees and provides safety seminars upon request.

Another major component of the position is analytical chemistry consulting, troubleshooting and method development for researchers department-wide.  Because analytical instrumentation is distributed throughout professors’ laboratories, the incumbent must also be available to ensure that this equipment is functioning properly and being used appropriately.  This requires the ability to diagnose and repair problems.

Finally, the incumbent assists faculty in the selection and acquisition of new analytical instrumentation including the writing of equipment grant proposals.  This requires continuous monitoring of instrumentation technology developments and the scientific equipment market.

Statistical Data

Annual Services Lab Income                                    ~ $28,000

Equipment Worth (Service Lab)                                ~ $500 K

Graduate Students and Visiting Scholars                  ~ 100

Professors                                                                      29

Specific Accountabilities

The following instruments are examples of the types of analytical equipment that are the responsibility of the Manager of Analytical Services and Lab Safety:

Atomic Absorption Spectrometer (AA); Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC): Thermogravimetric Analyzer (TGA); Mass Spectrometers (MS); Emission Spectrometers (ES); Gas Chromatographs (GC); Gas Chromatograph/Mass Spectrometers (GC/MS); Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrometers (FTIR): Conductivity meters; pH meters; Ultraviolet/Visible Spectrophotometers (UV/Vis); Ultraviolet fluorometers; Dissolved oxygen meters; Specific ion electrodes/meters; Ion Chromatographs (IC); Laboratory precision balances; High Performance Liquid Chromatographs (HPLC); Surface Area Analyzer (SAA); Dynamic Mechanical Analyzer (DMA).

Working Conditions

Part of the time is spent in a comfortable, computerized office environment generating reports, consulting, or performing administrative functions.  The rest of the time is spent in laboratory or pilot plant environments where the possibility of exposure to toxic and/or reactive chemicals exists.  Risk and stress levels are increased when, as the departmental safety officer, the incumbent must deal with a hazardous chemical spill or laboratory accident.  Also, the incumbent must manage multiple clients, analysts and deadlines while maintaining close attention to details and accuracy.