Advanced Output Center

AOC Laser Cutter Access Policy

Authorizations
  • Before using the laser cutter, you must first attend an authorization session at the AOC. Authorization sessions provide crucial information on file preparation, machine operation and safety procedures. Currently enrolled students, faculty and staff can be authorized for laser cutting.
  • The information covered during authorizations will change as software and hardware are updated or reconfigured. To keep users up to date on laser cutter techniques and policies, authorizations will be good for one calendar year, after which you will need to be re-authorized.
  • View the authorization schedule and sign up

Reservations
  • Reservations must be made in person through a lab monitor at least 3 hours before the time being reserved, and no more than 2 weeks in advance.
  • Reservations can only be made in 45-minute blocks. You can reserve up to 8 sessions of 45-minutes each per week. There is no limit for walk-in use.
  • Upon making a reservation, you must pay a non-refundable advance usage fee via ArtiCard. This applies to all authorized users (including faculty and staff). The fee is $5 per 45-minute time slot, and is not refundable under any circumstances.
  • Reservations are non-transferable from one person to another. You can only make and use reservations for yourself.
  • Reservations can be rescheduled if you notify the AOC at least 3 hours in advance of your reserved timeslot.
  • You will be given a 10-minute grace period to show up for your reserved time slot. After the grace period expires, your slot will become available for walk-in users at the per-minute rate.
  • In the unlikely event that your reserved time slot must be canceled due to equipment malfunction or other unforeseeable issues, you will be notified as quickly as possible and given the option to make a new reservation at the earliest available time slot. In the event that a laser cutter is taken offline, it will not be available for reservation until it is operational again.

Walk-ins
  • All authorized users are able to walk in and use the laser cutter when it has not been reserved in advance, or when a no-show for a reservation occurs. Walk-in users must check in with a lab monitor prior to cutting.
  • The walk-in usage fee is $0.15/minute for students and non-AOC staff members.
  • For walk-in usage, you can use as much time as is available, up to when the next reservation starts or the AOC closes, whichever comes first.

Reservations vs. Walk-ins
  • Reservations are recommended for cuts that will take 30 minutes or longer, or during semester peak usage periods.
  • Walk-ins are recommended for short, simple cuts. See the chart below for a comparison.

 

Reservation

Walk-In

Expense

Less ($5/45 minutes = ~$0.11/minute)

More ($0.15/minute = $6.75/45 minutes)

Lead Time

3 hrs

None

Per-Week Limit

3 hrs

None

Advantages

Better for cutting jobs that will take longer than 30 minutes. Flat non-refundable fee paid in advance assures you a reserved timeslot.

Better for short, simple cuts.

Questions? Email advancedoutput@saic.edu