Capital Equipment Grant Program

The Office of Research provides funding for an annual grants program for the acquisition of capital equipment to grow research and/or creative activities and position USU researchers to be more competitive for external funding. This program requires a minimum 1:1 match from applicants.

Questions? Contact Jeri Hansen at or (435) 797-3437.


  • The Equipment Requestor must hold a faculty appointment as defined in USU Policy 401.
  • Eligible capital equipment is defined as a single, stand-alone piece of equipment or an integrated instrumentation system that has an acquisition cost of $5,000 or more and a useful life of more than one year.
    • An integrated instrumentation system is one in which the components, when used in conjunction with one another, perform a function that no single component can provide. The components must be dedicated to the system and not used independently or with another preexisting system.
  • Equipment purchased through the program should have a primary function to grow research and/or creative activities (supporting student training can be a secondary function).
  • All Capital Equipment Grant applications will be reviewed by the Export Control Officer to determine if export controls may apply.

Requests Not Supported

  • Equipment with a base cost of less than $5,000 (base cost excludes add-on components)
  • General-purpose supporting equipment that would normally be found in a laboratory/research facility
    • Supporting equipment is defined as basic, durable components of a research facility that are integral to its operation (e.g., fume hoods, storage equipment, general-purpose computers, data storage systems, etc.)
  • Multiple, independent instruments bundled together
  • Purchases of existing capital equipment from another USU researcher or unit
  • Equipment that does not have a manufacturer warranty
  • Vehicle purchases (small off-road vehicles (ATVs, UTVs, SxSs) are allowed)
  • Primarily educational/instructional equipment
  • High-performance computing nodes or servers (on or off campus)
  • Costs associated with equipment installation or user training
  • Equipment requested as part of new faculty start-up

Proposal Format

General Formatting Requirements

  • 2 pages maximum
  • Single-spaced text
  • 12-point font, 1-inch margins, page numbers
  • Page limitation includes any figures and tables as part of the Equipment Purchase Plan
  • Page limitation excludes Cover Sheet form, references, and Appendices
  • Capital Equipment Grant Template

Cover Sheet

Equipment Purchase Plan

(2 pages maximum; subsections listed below must be included in the order shown)

Equipment Description

Identify equipment type, make, model, the proposed source, and whether purchase is to replace existing equipment (provide a justification for why the existing equipment needs replacement). Including an equipment brochure from the manufacturer is highly recommended (as part of Appendix D, Supplementary Documentation ).

Describe the critical research and/or creative activity need that the equipment will meet and its anticipated impact on and ability to grow research and/or creative activity at USU (increased competitiveness for external grants, improved productivity, more publications, etc.). Explain how current and planned future research and/or creative activity drives the equipment request and how its acquisition will improve the capabilities of USU.

An application for integrated components must be justified in the context of how it meets the definition of an integrated instrumentation system (i.e., one in which the components, when combined, serve as a single instrument and performs a function that no single component can provide).

Equipment Usage

Describe the pool of potential users of the equipment. Specific details for potential users (name, position, college/department affiliation, active awards/pending and future external proposals that would benefit from the equipment) must be provided as part of Appendix B  . Note that funding priority is typically given to equipment that benefits multiple faculty. Letters of support from potential users indicating their need, anticipated level of usage, and impact the equipment would make in their research must be provided as part of Appendix B.

Describe where the nearest accessible piece of similar equipment is located and, if known, the fee structure for its use.

Describe the anticipated frequency of use for the proposed equipment. Note that funding priority is typically given to equipment that will be used frequently.

Identify whether other users will be able to access the proposed equipment. If they will, describe how accessibility and use by others (internal and external to USU) will be managed.

Equipment Location, Installation, and Safety Considerations

Identify and provide a site analysis for the proposed equipment location including adequacy of available space for size and weight requirements, utilities, shielding, etc. Describe any modifications to the proposed location that will be required for equipment installation/operation and include who will provide the funding for completion. Official sign off by Facilities, Environmental Health and Safety, etc. may be required post-submission. Floor plans, if appropriate, can be included in Appendix D (Supplementary Documentation) .

Describe any safety considerations associated with equipment installation/operation such as shielding, exposure to hazardous material, radiation, etc.

Staffing and Maintenance

Describe the plan to staff and/or maintain the proposed equipment.

Identify the individual who will be responsible for staffing and/or maintenance of the proposed equipment (name, position, college/department affiliation, and whether equipment maintenance is currently part of this person’s official role).

Identify the funding source(s) that will be used to maintain the equipment following installation. This may be in the form of user fees and/or departmental/college support. 

Budget and Match

Identify the total cost estimate for the proposed equipment purchase. A recent (within 30 days of application submission) cost estimate/quote must be provided in Appendix A (Cost Estimate/Quote) . The quote must reflect an academic discount, if available, warranty terms, and the period which the quote is good through.

Identify the total amount provided by the Equipment Requestor and any additional funding contributor(s) toward the proposed equipment purchase (must equal at least half of the cost estimate).

Identify the total amount requested from the Office of Research toward the proposed equipment purchase (cannot be more than half of the cost estimate). Office of Research match requests over $25,000 may require additional documentation post-submission.

Match account index number(s) must be provided at the time of proposal and account owners must sign indicating their agreement to providing the match (Appendix C, Grant Match) .

The match requirement can only be met with cash commitments. The source of those funds does not matter with two exceptions: a) they are not restricted by some other agency or entity; or b) they are not Office of Research provided funds such as start up or seed grant funds.

Equipment must be purchased within 12 months of receipt of grant. Funding will not be available for purchases made outside of the grant period and grants will not be extended.

NOTE: If at the time of purchase the proposed equipment price ends up higher than an award amount, the Equipment Requestor/additional funding contributor(s) will need to cover the increased cost. Grant amounts will not be adjusted post-award.

Appendices (No Page Limit)


The FY24 Capital Equipment Grant application period is now closed.

Application Review Information

Equipment applications for research and/or creative activity enhancement are reviewed by an internal panel comprised of representatives from each college and the Office of Research. For research equipment requests specifically, the goal of the Capital Equipment Grant program is to grow externally funded research success. Therefore, the recent awards and current/pending externally proposed research activities of the Equipment Requestor and all potential users are important factors and will also be evaluated.

Review Criteria (Scored: 1=low to 5=high)

  • The extent to which the proposed equipment will grow USU’s capacity to conduct externally funded research and/or creative activity
  • The extent to which the research and/or creative activity to be enabled is compelling and justifies the equipment request
  • The extent to which the proposed equipment will be used by multiple faculty and/or for shared-use research and/or creative activity
  • The extent to which the projected frequency and level of use is compelling and justifies the equipment request
  • Suitability of Staffing and Maintenance Plan, as appropriate

General Timeline

What When
Application period open December – February
Applications due to the Office of Research End of February
Notification of awards by the Office of Research April – May
Grant period June 1 – May 31

Equipment must be purchased within 12 months of receipt of grant. Funding will not be available for purchases made outside of the grant period and grants will not be extended.