Frequently Asked Questions

I can't commit to making the data open access in 12 months. Can I get an exemption from this rule?

The embargo period for the data is established during the planning stage of the project and is counted from the last day of access to the Facility. This period is typically 12 months. Exceptions to the normal 12 month embargo period can be requested by writing to the ROAR Management Committee with 1) your proposed embargo period, 2) justification for why the embargo extension is required, and 3) an outline plan (with timings) for steps that you need to take prior to release of data.
If the data cannot be made open access, then the project cannot be granted access through the call for proposals (academic access). In that case, the user may request access to the Facility through other routes and costing models.

[From our Guidance for Proposals to access ROAR Facility, Section 5 – Data Policy:
5.1 All Research Data collected within the Facility, where that access to the Facility has been granted through a call for proposals, will be deposited in an open access repository by the Facility, after an embargo period agreed during the Stage Two application. […]
5.2 Experiments which cannot be archived in an open access repository, for whatever reason, will not be granted access through a call for proposals. Users may request access to the Facility for IP sensitive experiments through other routes and costing models. Contact the Facility team ( if such access is required.]

How do I get my reaction risk assessment approved?

Before being allowed access to the Facility, a detailed Project Plan, a Project Agreement and a Reaction Risk Assessment for the experiment must be completed and approved. This is done through LabArchives, our ELN. (If you do not have yet a Project Folder in the ROAR electronic notebook, request one by emailing Use the Reaction RA template for the risk assessment: copy the template in your project folder, fill it with all required information and, once completed, sign it and specify a ROAR team member as witness.

I need to talk to someone from ROAR or show them something about my reaction. When can I do this?

If you would like to discuss your project with a member of the ROAR team then please book one of our regular consultation slots. These are booked on a first come, first served basis through Calendly. Please provide some basic details about the ROAR equipment you want to discuss, and/or the proposed experiment so we can assign the most appropriate team member to your meeting. Click here to book.

If you have a more specific question about your reaction, you can use the comment function on LabArchives to ask ROAR a specific question. To access the comment function please hover your mouse over the section header to reveal the options. Select the 'comment' option:

and ask your question in the comment panel. Note: remember to tag ROAR team members so that we can be notified about the comment (tag multiple ROAR members for a quicker response).
Visit out page “How to get help from ROAR” to get more information.

I have an idea for a project but need to do X first (e.g. new student needs to arrive). When should I apply for access to ROAR?

You can apply at the first available batching date. Technical and scientific evaluation of the proposals may require some time, up to few months (depending on the number of proposals received). Once a proposal is received and access is granted, at the detailed planning stage the access period can be timed according to the user’s needs.

[From our Guidance for Proposals to access ROAR Facility, Section 3 – Stage Two: Detailed Planning:
3.4 After Stage Two planning has been completed to the satisfaction of the ROAR Management Team the experiments will be scheduled.]

Can I just use the LC instruments in ROAR?

The ROAR Analytical Suite, comprising one UPLC Q-TOF and one SFC/HPLC MS, provides analytical support to ROAR projects. As such, it is not to be treated as a walk-up analytical instrument for people in the department. For routine LC analysis, refer to the Agilent Measurement Suite.
If you would like to access the instruments for analysis of high-throughput reaction, you can submit a project to access ROAR, given that the project meets the accessibility criteria:

  • The project must fall under the remit of the Dial-a-Molecule Grand Challenge Network. As a general rule we expect all ROAR projects to generate some form of reaction data. Applications to use just the LCMS instruments alone will usually be considered outside our remit unless plans are made to attach appropriate reaction data to the analytical data.
  • The project must be able to comply with all research data collected in ROAR being automatically deposited in an open access repository following an agreed embargo period (typically 12 months)

I am part of the AMS MRes or React CDT. Does this mean we get special access to the instruments? Do we still need to fill in an application?

Yes, you should still follow the application procedure for imperial college users found HERE. As part of the Advanced Molecular Synthesis group or React CDT, you will already have a LabArchives account. Nevertheless, a Project Plan and a Project Agreement should be agreed upon with your supervisor and with the ROAR team before access to the Facility. For more information, read the READ ME page on your ELN.

Can ROAR just train me up to use instrument X?

Access to ROAR instrument is granted only after submission of a project (see access ROAR webpage). If a project has been submitted and a Project Plan and Project Agreement have been agreed upon with the ROAR team, then the user(s) can be trained to use the instrument(s) needed for his/her project.
Note that this does not apply for the Unchained Labs HT robotic systems. Use of the robotic units will happen only together with one of the ROAR team members.

I have logged into LabArchives but don't see anything.

There might be different reasons for this:

  • You are using the US website instead of the UK website. Make sure you are logging in uk‑ (if you are in, then you are in the US version of the website).
  • You signed up for a LabArchives account directly through website instead of following the link in the email. You should have received an email from LabArchives after your account was set up. Please follow the link to activate your account. If you haven’t receive the email (check also the Spam folder), contact the ROAR team ( and we will create the account for you.
  • Two different forms of the email address are used to create the account and to access it. Please, use the same form of email address to access the account as was used to create your account (commonly, this is the email address you provided to create the account in the first instance).

If none of these fixes your problem, contact the ROAR team ( or the LabArchives support (

Clustermarket is saying it will cost £X to book the instrument. I thought academic access was still free.

Access to ROAR instruments is free (subsidised) for academic users UNTIL END OF 2020. The only charges applied will be on consumables. Clustermarket requires that a price is associated to each instrument added to the platform, and this price cannot be £0. The instrument cost given by Clustermarket at the time of booking should be disregarded.

NOTE that this subsidised model will be in place only until end of 2020 and will apply only to running projects or projects submitted during the "call for proposals for subsidised access" and started before the end of 2020 (due to the COVID-19 situation, the deadline might extend to the first months of 2021). Future proposals and access requests will fall out of the initial EPSRC grant scheme and will be subject to fees for instrument time (at Research Council rates).

To keep updated on the access costs, check the Access ROAR page.

[From our Guidance for Proposals to access ROAR Facility, Section 6 – Division of Costs:
6.1 Access to the Facility is subsidised by an EPSRC Strategic Equipment Grant (EP/R008825/1). Under this model the capital cost of equipment, maintenance contracts, laboratory space, and staff overheads are covered for the duration of the grant.
6.2 Users will be charged at an hourly or daily rate for usage of Facility equipment and instruments. The charge will cover the cost of shared consumables (for example solvents, cryogens, HPLC columns) required to operate the particular equipment or instrument.
6.3 Users will be charged per unit for itemised consumables (e.g. vials, plates etc) needed for their experiment.]

Clustermarket won't let me book an instrument for the time I want.

There might be different reasons for this:

  • The instrument is already booked for the time requested. Choose a different time slot to use the instrument.
  • The booking time is in the past. You may not have the rights to edit bookings or make bookings in the past (e.g., if you forgot to book an instrument which you are using). Contact the ROAR team ( stating instrument and booking time and a ROAR team member will update your booking for you.
  • You cannot access the instrument. You may not have the rights to book an instrument because the instrument is not available to the public or you haven’t received the training for the instrument yet. Contact the ROAR team ( to receive the training and being granted rights for the instrument booking on Clustermarket.

If none of these fixes your problem, contact the ROAR team ( or the Clustermarket support (

When are you going to repeat workshop X?

Our workshops (e.g., kinetics, design of experiment) are usually held once a year. However, if we find large interest for a specific topic, additional dates can be planned to extend our audience. Keep an eye on our News and Events webpage or subscribe to our newsletter to receive updated information on workshops and other events.

I would like to run a reaction under pressure with in-situ analytics. Is it possible?

Unfortunately, ROAR currently does not have capabilities for in situ analysis of reactions under pressure. To use in situ IR, reactions should be performed at atmospheric pressure. Alternatively, reactions under pressure can run on our Oprimisation Sampling Reactor (OSR) instrument, taking several samples during reactions for offline analysis.

For more information of what we can or cannot do on our instruments, have a look here.