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Equipment should be listed individually with a description and estimated cost.  The budget justification should address the project need and the lack of available comparable research equipment or other related devise. Equipment is defined as having useful life of more than one year and a stand-alone per-unit acquisition cost which equals or exceeds $5,000 (see the Materials and Supplies category when less than $5,000 or having a useful life of less than a year).  The acquisition cost can include modifications, attachments, and accessories necessary to make the property usable for the purpose for which it was purchased (excluding such items as maintenance plans and warranties, operating supplies, handling fees, training costs, software licenses and project personnel salaries related to fabricated equipment).  Where appropriate, an analysis shall be made of lease and purchase alternatives to determine which would be the most economical and practical procurement method.  Leasing of computer equipment is budgeted under the Computer Services category.  Equipment costs are usually excluded from the Facilities and Administrative (F&A) cost calculation (exceptions apply). See the MSU Manual of Business Procedures (MBP) for more information.

Vendor Quotes for Purchasing Equipment and Supplies

  • Do not list a specific vendor in the proposal or the proposal budget/budget justification unless required by the solicitation or sponsor guidelines. This will help to ensure that the appropriate procurement method is followed once awarded.
  • Quotes for equipment or supplies can be obtained by processing a MSU Purchase Requisition with a note “for quote only” at the top.
  • If the proposal is awarded, please work with MSU Purchasing in advance to make sure the appropriate procurement method is used for equipment, supplies and contractual services.


The cost to purchase a physical computer server/node through iCER would be considered equipment if over $5,000. This is often referred to as an HPCC buy-in. Alternatively, the cost to co-locate any planned server purchases within MSU’s Data Center is not considered equipment. Co-location charges should be budgeted under Other Direct Costs as a Computer Service.

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