About equipment requests for your research
Requests to the University for equipment contribution requests are normally required if your applying to the Research Councils for funding where the budget includes equipment over £10k in value. There are different procedures depending on the amount of funding requested.
If you are requesting equipment between £10k and the OJEU threshold you will need to complete and submit an EQR1 form. Submissions are done through our Proposal to Award Management (PAM) system.
If your request is for equipment above the OJEU threshold will you will need to complete and submit a paper EQR2 form.
Equipment below £10k
Single items of capital equipment, below £10k, are treated as consumables and should be recorded in ‘Other Directly Incurred’ costs in Je-S.
Research Councils are now less likely to find small items such as PCs, unless they are non-standard, ‘high spec’, items and justified as having specific need for the research.
Equipment between £10k and the OJEU threshold (EQR1)
Requests for single items of capital equipment between £10k and the OJEU Threshold require:
- Justification, including a check of existing asset registers (include in the Justification of Resources section in Je-S)
- commitment from the University or project partner to contribute 50% of the equipment cost
Before submitting an EQR1 form check if existing equipment is available by:
- checking the University equipment list which is published via the GW4 Alliance database
- arranging to use, share or modify existing equipment
- including costs for equipment access or travel in your costing
- leasing the equipment if cheaper over the life of the project
If you are able to identify suitable existing equipment, contact the person responsible (or general enquiries) to discuss whether sharing/access is possible. For sharing equipment within the University, please use the following Inter Departmental Loan form.
If no suitable existing equipment can be identified:
- Complete the online EQR1 form (requires University login).
- Complete the Procurement Planning form (attached to the online EQR1 form).
Equipment above the OJEU Threshold (EQR 2)
For Research Councils and other funders, requests for large items of equipment need to show that they are part of a University strategy of investment. This shows there is University investment in the proposed equipment.
Requests to Research Councils for equipment above the OJEU threshold need to be made separately, using a two page business case setting out the strategic need for the equipment. The Research Councils (except EPSRC) will fund such requests up to 100% but many of them expect a contribution from the University.
Usually business cases are attached to a research proposal. However, EPSRC have a separate process for managing requests for equipment over the OJEU threshold. A business case has to be submitted via email (separately to a research proposal). If EPSRC approve the business case, the University submits a full proposal with the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) as PI which is assessed at interview panel.
The University has an internal process which must be completed prior to requesting large items of equipment. This is to comply with expectations from the funders and manage the need for large items of equipment more effectively.
To apply for an item of equipment over the OJEU threshold (except for EPSRC as their upper limit for a 50% contribution is £400k) you must:
- Fill out the EQR2 form.
- Send the EQR2 form to RIS at least 4 weeks before the call’s deadline.
You must also complete the Procurement Planning Form.
Preparing the business case
There is a Research Council guidance for equipment above the OJEU threshold and for other funders there will be individual call guidance.
You should also contact your Pre-Award Officer, your Research Development Manager, and Purchasing Services for guidance in preparing the business case and submitting it to the University and the funders.
- As well as the basic cost of the equipment, RCUK advise that 'Capital costs plus any maintenance and other related costs that are not included in the Research Organisation's estates costs should be included.'
- All grant bodies require equipment purchases over 10k to go through the correct University purchasing procedure amd equipment purchases over the threshold must go through the purchasing procedure as stipulated in European law - see the Quick Guide to Procuring Equipment or contact Greg Derrick, Deputy Head of Procurement
- Orders cannot be split or broken down to avoid the thresholds
- UKRI states that 'For all equipment costing more than £25k (including VAT), professionally qualified procurement staff at the [University of Bath] must be consulted at the beginning of the procurement process and must approve the order before it is placed with the supplier. Additional documentary evidence for the estimated cost (e.g., supplier's written quote, specialist advice) should be included.'
- RCUK rules do not affect equipment over £10k for instrument development and will attract 100% funding
- Leasing equipment is counted as a capital cost and therefore the same rules and procedures apply
- The OJEU limit is reviewed biennially