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Research Instrumentation Fund (RIF) Program

Program Purpose

The Research Instrumentation Fund (RIF) provides support to faculty and core facilities for new equipment purchases and to replace or upgrade existing research instruments. Funding comes from the University's indirect cost reimbursements. Equipment purchased with central funds is meant to be shared as broadly as possible.  


The Research Instrumentation Fund is available to individuals who currently hold a faculty appointment at the University of Utah and to recognized University of Utah core facilities.  There are separate applications available for Faculty and Core Facilities. Please make sure you choose the correct application. Only core facility directors should initiate core equipment requests.

The grant period is for one year only and funds must be expended within that year. Only in unusual circumstances will a written request for an extension be considered. If awarded, please identify the PI on any/all requisitions.  

Matching Funds

Matching funds are required for an application to be considered for a RIF award, unless there are exceptional circumstances. Matching funds are an indicator of support and demonstrate the importance of the acquisition to those supporting the application. The amount and sources for the matching funds will be important in the evaluation and prioritization of a RIF request.  Unless there are documented exceptional circumstances, a minimum of 30% in matching funds is requested.

We highly encourage faculty and cores to seek the best price for equipment, and to provide documentation of this negotiation as support for their application.  Such discounts will be considered in the evaluation of the RIF application. Manufacture discounts and in-kind donations, however, are not considered matching funds.

Instrumentation for Teaching/Training

RIF funds arise from indirect cost reimbursements from research contracts and grants, and hence are earmarked solely for research and not for teaching/training purposes.  If requested instrumentation will also be used for teaching/training, the fraction of use for teaching/training must be provided and the funding for that fraction of the acquisition, maintenance, and use must be identified.  Matching funds for teaching/training purposes are independent from the matching funds for research purposes.    


Starting the Application Process

Deadline: January 15 & September 20 by 5 pm

CORE and Faculty applications for the Research Instrumentation Fund (RIF) competition are available on InfoReady. Your application should include:

  1. A description of the equipment and how it is different from other equipment available on campus.   
    • Requests for replacement equipment must provide documentation on prior use, e.g. log book if it is a core device then show revenue and user base.
  2. Budget and matching funds. (please see requirements above)
  3. Detailed description of the management, anticipated lifespan and continued maintenance of the equipment. 
  4. Directions for access (including time frame, costs/recharge, etc.)
  5. Equipment housing location (if the equipment cannot be housed in a core facility, please provide justification in your application.) 
  6. Equipment sharing between laboratories.
  7. The importance of the equipment for scholarship and productivity.
  8. Include information on the impact of the equipment on extramural funding. 
  9. Any additional benefits the equipment would provide to the University of Utah.
  10. Please verify that similar equipment is not currently available on campus through the Find Equipment link. If similar equipment is available, provide justification why addition equipment is needed.

Letters of Support are required. Faculty should include a letter from the College Dean, Department Chair, and additional faculty members with their application.

Resubmissions: Resubmitted proposals should include a point-by-point response to the previous reviews.

Requests for replacement equipment: provide documentation on prior use, e.g. log book if it is a core device then show revenue and user base.


Submission of Proposals

Application materials must be submitted using InfoReady. 

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Last Updated: 6/20/19