Requesting instrument time

BOSCORF welcomes requests from researchers and graduate students worldwide to analyse the cores in its care (as long as the cores are not in a research moratorium period).

We ask visitors to prepare samples for analyses themselves, which may include scraping off the top of sediment cores to obtain a flat and fresh surface. Depending on the number of samples that need to be analysed, we can do the analyses for you, or you may be asked to learn how to operate the instruments and do the analyses yourself.

Please contact us if you have any questions. We are happy to help you estimate measuring times and the duration of your visit.

Before you request

We kindly ask you to consider the following points before you request analysis time on one of our instruments.

  • If you are interested in using an instrument, please refer first to the instrument pages for guidance on sample suitability.
  • If you wish to use any of the instruments, please discuss volumes and timescales with us before committing to external deadlines.
  • BOSCORF offers a bursary scheme that will support analysis for PhD students/Early Career Researchers and for pilot studies.
  • The ITRAX schedule is normally fully booked six months in advance.

How to request?

If you would like to request analysis time, please complete the Analysis Request Form and email the accompanying Analysis Request Sample List to

Please note you must to provide details (one paragraph) describing the purpose of the proposed research, which will be compared to NERC’s objectives. If there is any doubt about the purpose of the research, the BOSCORF Advisory Group will be consulted to rule on the request. All information regarding research purposes will be dealt with confidentially.

During your visit

If you plan to visit BOSCORF in person, for example, for using the analytical facilities, please note the following rules:

  • If you are new to BOSCORF, you will need to be inducted into the lab. We are happy to arrange training for new PhD students on a one-to-one basis as needed, but we are also happy to host supervisors and discuss the individual needs of the project.
  • Visitor passes must be signed out from a BOSCORF member of staff, and access to visitor passes arranged in advance.
  • Hours of access are limited to 9am to 5pm. Should you require extended times, this needs to be arranged in advance.
  • Access to the fridge and laboratory needs to be arranged in advance. We ask everyone (including Southampton-based users) to email at least 24 hours before you wish to access the cold store or use the lab.
  • You are responsible for tidying up after your lab session, including re-racking your cores promptly. This is not the role of the BOSCORF team.

After your visit

Users are asked to acknowledge BOSCORF in any publications produced, in whole or in part, by their use of the facility. We produce an Annual Report that highlights the varied work made possible through BOSCORF and it is important that we are notified of any research outcome (paper, book, conference abstract or presentation) from work undertaken at the facility.

Research collaboration with facility staff

Users are strongly encouraged to engage with facility staff as part of our active reseearch collaboration culture at BOSCORF. We have a range of in-house expertise to support you from the logistical, analytical, data quality assurance, and interpretation stages of your research - in return, we are pleased to engage with you through to the final stages of research output and publication.