BIC Facilities Policies & Pricing Providing unique access to all major imaging instruments and modalities

The unique platform infrastructure of the McConnell BIC is available and accessible to all researchers. All imaging cores are hosted under the unique roof of The Neuro. Every year, the McConnell BIC scans >3,500 research participants with a multimodality of 7 research-dedicated scanners for humans and animal models.

BIC Booking Calendar (account required)

Procedure for Obtaining Access to the Platforms

New studies often require technical development time to identify potential issues in the implementation of the paradigm (acquisition parameters, event triggering, testing of experimental equipment, etc.) and the acquisition of pilot data. The staff at the BIC is available to help. Please follow the steps below to obtain access to the facilities.

  1. Contact the Unit Director for initial discussion of your project. They may suggest that you present it at a staff or group meeting and benefit from interacting with the staff and other researchers in elaborating the implementation of your study.
  2. Complete any required safety training for the platform you wish to access acording to the information under each Unit. Optional operator training is also available for some instruments. The Unit team can also help getting your paradigm running on the stimulus computer or setup custom equipment. 
  3. Submit your study protocol to the appropriate Scientific Committee to obtain a letter of scientific approval, to be attached with your ethics submission. Protocol templates customized to specific platforms may be found on the Unit or Committee pages. Note that a separate scientific review for MRI is not required for MEG or PET projects which include only standard anatomical MR scans of participants.
  4. Seek ethics approval from the appropriate Research Ethics Board (REB) or Institutional Review Board (IRB). The scientific approval letter obtained in the previous step must be included in this submission. Researchers are responsible for ensuring that projects are submitted to the appropriate REB.
    • Any study that uses McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) resources or recruits MUHC patients, families or staff must be reviewed by the MUHC REB. Examples include chart review, interactions with clinical team for recruitment or data gathering, research using hospital equipment or personnel. Any study that uses or relies on the MUHC affiliation, for example, projects funded by grants managed at the MUHC, should also be reviewed by the MUHC REB. See also The Neuro website.
      Online platform: Nagano
    • Studies that make no use of MUHC resources may be eligible for review by the McGill IRB. Examples of potentially eligible studies include cognitive neuroscience research (i.e. behavioral, EEG, MEG, eye-tracking, non-invasive brain stimulation or neuroimaging) involving: Healthy human participants (all ages) and/or people with health conditions recruited from the community. Studies that access data or biospecimens from an approved biobank or registry may also be eligible.
      Online platform: eRAP
    • For animal research, your project will require approval from McGill Animal Care Committee.
      Online platform: Animal Management System (AMS)
  5. For human PET studies, Health Canada must be notified.  The form below should be filled in coordination with the PET Unit, and emailed to brdd.bra-daerf.dmbr [at]
  6. If you do not have a McGill ID number and McGill email address, fill the form below and email it to the bic-finance.mni [at] (subject: Request%20McGill%20ID%20number) (BIC Reservations Coordinators).
  7. Each new study must be added to the BIC booking system and require an REB file number and billing information (FOAPAL or PO for external researchers - see Billing tab). Please submit this form to the bic-finance.mni [at] (BIC Reservations Coordinators).
  8. Once the study is set up, the Principal Investigator will receive an email asking them to log into the web schedule to verify and approve the study.
  9. Schedule piloting sessions. Special pricing applies. See Pricing tab.

Imaging Pricing

Please note that due to increases in operating costs of the imaging platforms at the BIC, an overall increase of 10% has been applied to all rates as of July 2022.  For grant application budgeting purposes, estimates of future rate increases are also indicated for each platform.

Human subjects on most platforms: MRI 3T, PET, MEG

Non-profit agency funded $550/h
For grant applications:
$600/h 2025-2026
$650/h 2027-2028
Pilot & development $275/h
Industry-sponsored Contact BIC or Unit director:
MR: julien.doyon [at] (Dr Julien Doyon)
PET: jean-paul.soucy [at] (Dr Jean-Paul Soucy)
MEG: sylvain.baillet [at] (Dr Sylvain Baillet)
Anatomical T1 MRI at 3T for PET or MEG study $137.50 for 15 minutes
Weekend (4 consecutive hours minimum)
or weekday after hours

$60/h extra charge per staff

A pilot session is strictly for technical developments and basic testing of a new paradigm, stimulus presentation technique, and acquisition parameters, with or without a subject volunteer. It does not refer to small-scale or preliminary "pilot projects", which are considered to be research studies and subject to all normal policies regarding institutional review and user fees. Pilot scanning must be linked to a specific research study that has been approved by the applicable review boards. The BIC has highly qualified personnel on all platforms to assist users with piloting their experiments. The expected number of pilot sessions varies with the complexity of the study, but 2 sessions per study is typical. Additional conditions apply for the MRI Unit.

For technical assistance, development, or special requests, please contact the appropriate Unit team.


Siemens Terra 7T MRI $550/h
$650/h starting July 2024
For grant applications:
$700/h 2026-2028
Gadolinium dose (includes injection) $165 per dose
Small-animal Bruker Pharmascan 7T, non-profit agency funded $220/h
Small-animal Bruker Pharmascan 7T, pilot $110/h
Unattended histology averaging, Siemens Prisma 3T $55/h
Unattended histology averaging, Siemens Terra 7T $110/h
Unattended histology averaging, Bruker Pharmascan 7T $11/h

No extra cost for MR-compatible EEG (32 or 256 channel) or TMS


Hourly rates do not include cost of radiotracer dose.

Bookings must be 1 hour minimum, with subsequent 30-minute increments.

CTI Concord R4 micro-PET and autoradiography, non-profit agency funded $275/h

Production of radiotracers

FDG, provided by user $750/dose currently, subject to increase dependent on supplier pricing.
Non-FDG 18F tracers, 1st dose $2,100
Additional fees apply for external shipments. Contact jean-paul.soucy [at] (PET Unit Director).
Non-FDG 18F tracers, additional doses from same batch
(can be grouped amongst different studies and investigators)

2nd: $1,300
3rd: $1,100
4th: $600
5th: $500

11C tracers $2,200/dose

For development of new tracer, contact Cyclotron Unit Director, gassan.massarweh [at] (Dr Gassan Massarweh).


  • 1-hour FDG scan = $750 (dose) + $550 (hourly rate) = $1300
  • 2-hour 11C scan = $2,200 (dose) + $1,100 = $3,200
  • 2 x 2-hour 18F (non-FDG) same-day scans = [$2,100 (dose 1) + $1,100] + [$1,300 (dose 2) + $1,100] = $5,600 total = $2,800/scan
  • 3 x 2-hour 18F (non-FDG) same-day scans = [$2,100 (dose 1) + $1,100] + [$1,300 (dose 2) + $1,100] + [$1,100 (dose 3) + $1,100] = $7,800 total = $2,600/scan

We encourage PET users to budget a flat rate of $3,200/scan in their funding applications. To distribute the validation costs of all new tracers amongst the entire PET user community, we also encourage PET users to budget a minimum of $16,000 plus $3500 “for tracer validation” and an HPLC column. The Core Director can provide all the necessary budget justifications to add to the grant application.


CTF 275-channel, with optional 60-channel simultaneous EEG, and real-time feedback/imaging capacity.

Operator certification Requires 3 supervised sessions of requested study at regular hourly rate. No additional training fee.
User certification remains valid for all future sessions and studies.
Certified user discounted rate $440/h
For grant applications:
$500/h 2025-2026
$550/h 2027-2028

MEG Infinity Program (to be revised on a yearly basis), now only available to PIs new to the MEG Unit: Flat rate for unlimted scans over 6 months for one study, i.e. one ethics number. 

  Subscription cost
PIs new to the MEG Unit $20,000
Additional cost for simultaneous, high-density EEG $10,000

For the MEG Infinity plan, after 3 late cancellations, an additional penalty fee of $275 will be charged for all further late cancellations.

Informatics Pricing

Data storage

Minimal lease period is one month.

Basic storage (no mirroring, no backup) $110 / TB annually
Mirrored storage (no backup) $220 / TB annually
Mirrored & BackedUp storage (for maximum data safety) $330 / TB annually

1 terabyte (TB) = 1,000 gigabytes (GB) = 1,000,000 megabytes (MB)

BIC Workstation Maintenance

Workstation/Server Administration & Maintenance $220 / unit annually

The initial minimal maintenance period is one year, after which one may opt out at any time and fees will be rounded off to the end of the current month.

Maintenance is three-fold: Hardware, software, and network management. Software maintenance is bounded by our Software and User Management Policy (see below). Service includes expert consulting for workstation or data server specification, purchase, installation and maintenance. Networked data storage leases (ordered separately) are also made available on your workstation.

BIC Virtual Machine (VM) Provisioning

Fees in the following table include $220 annual maintenance fee.

“Small” VM: Specifications: 1 CPU, 4 GB RAM, 40 GB storage for OS and /tmp, 8 GB swap. $495 / unit annually
“Medium” VM: Specifications: 2 CPU + 8 GB RAM, 40 GB storage for OS and /tmp, 16 GB swap. $770 / unit annually
“Big” VM: Specifications: 4 CPU + 16 GB RAM, 40 GB storage for OS and /tmp, 32 GB swap. $1320 / unit annually
“Very big” VM: Specifications: 8 CPU + 32 GB RAM, 40 GB storage for OS and /tmp, 64 GB swap. $2420 / unit annually

The minimal lease period is one year.

Default OS: Ubuntu 18.04 LTS or 20.04 LTS.

Maintenance is two-fold: Software, and network management. Software maintenance is bounded by our Software and User Management Policy (see below). Service includes expert consulting to establish your resource needs regarding virtual CPU and memory footprint. Networked data storage leases (ordered separately) are also made available on your VM.

Additional support for users with or without Maintenance Contracts

  • $220/hour (1 hour minimum; subsequent 30-min blocks)

Software and User Management Policy

User accounting: the workstation or VM is available to any number of users, while enforcing desired access policies. By default access is given to a specific lab and any account or access requests must come directly from the Principal Investigator or a designated lab manager.

We mostly support linux environments with some exceptions for Microsoft-Windows-based imaging/acquisition consoles. The Linux distributions which are provided at the time of this writing are Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and 20.04 LTS, while Debian and Ubuntu are generally supported. All workstation or VM installations comprise a series of specialized software applications for neuro-imaging research (MINC, SPM, FSL, AFNI, Brainstorm, etc.). Installation of additional software packages can be accommodated upon request when it serves the community at large, such as Matlab distributions, while users are expected to install and maintain software locally (as opposed to system wide) when experimenting, unless such soft ware is pre-packaged for the running linux distribution and can be readily installed. Furthermore, if you have lab specific and complex software needs, which require more work and attention, as for imaging/acquisition consoles, WEB applications or software with complex upgrades demanding database maintenance for example, again you are expected to support and maintain such software, although an agreement for additional support can be negotiated and bounded by our fees listed above.

Additionally on the VM side, web hosting tools such as Apache, Nginx, PHP, MySQL, javascript and docker can be provided, along with ssl certificates, providing secure https access.

For special requests and quotes, please contact [at] (contact us).


You must book the length of time necessary for data acquisition in the instrument, the duration for subject preparation, and any additional time required to leave the suite ready for the next user. You will be billed for the reserved time or more, if additional time is used. Billing starts with the booking time even for late arrivals.

Bookings cancelled at least 5 working days before the scheduled time will not be billed. Cancellations on shorter notice (less than five working days) will be charged for the scheduled time. For example, if a scan is scheduled for 1 pm on Monday, the researcher must cancel by 1 pm on the preceding Monday to avoid charges. Frequent cancellation may result in administration fees being charged to the researcher or restricted access to the scanner.

Every effort will be made to avoid changes in the scanning schedule but staffing shortages, equipment failure or other unforeseen issue may require that a confirmed session be rescheduled. You will be notified as soon as possible if one of your bookings must be rescheduled, and every effort will be made to reschedule the session shortly thereafter, with no penalty charge.

To allow best use of technical assistance and to allow development work, scans that do not use subjects (such as protocol development or phantom scans) will be scheduled outside the technicians' regular work hours, or during available time, depending on the platform. These hours must still be scheduled in advance.

Please direct special requests to the platform director, such as additional technical support and/or blocks of time for “off hours” scanning (at a small additional charge).

McGill users

You must provide a FOAPAL number. An email will be sent to the Principal Investigator and/or their Delegate, with instructions on how to approve and enter in their FOAPAL for payment of scans via our scheduling system.

  • All payments must be made by the 15th of the month.

Researchers with affiliation outside the McGill Campus (i.e. Douglas, JGH, RI-MUHC)

You need to provide the BIC with a standing Purchase Order (PO) issued by the hospital, institution or company paying for the services.

  • Please first contact helen.elina [at] (Helen Elina) for a quotation. The total amount of the standing PO must be large enough to cover all scan requests until the end of the fiscal year at your institution. 
  • The PO is to be made out to:
    McGill University Accounts Receivable
    3465 Durocher St., Suite #323
    Montreal, Quebec H2X 0A8
  • Once the PO is issued, please send it to bic-finance.mni [at] (subject: New%20P.O.%20for%20study%20at%20BIC) (BIC Finance), for processing.

All payments will be processed through McGill Accounts Payable.

Data Analysis (MRI, MEG/EEG, PET)

Our teams of highly-qualified personnel are here to assist all investigators and can perform their data analysis (with data acquired at our Centre or elsewhere), in any imaging modality featured at the McConnell Brain Imaging Centre.

How to schedule time on the BIC booking calendar

To gain access to the booking calendar, you must first have a study set up in the booking system. Please see the Obtaining Access tab for details.

All users must have received the required safety training for the corresponding modality, e.g. MR safety video.

  1. Login as PI or USER (default) on the BIC Booking Calendar (account required)
    Username/password are your McGill email and password.
  2. Click on Calendar
  3. Select the core service Brain Imaging Center
  4. Select a study: only those you are authorized to book are listed
  5. Select an equipment, i.e. scanner
  6. Navigate to the date you would like to book and click on the desired time
  7. Complete the request form that appears and submit.
    You must complete one request for each subject. Please fill in the subject code for all bookings, as proof that there is a confirmed participant. Reserving time slots without a confirmed participant is not allowed.
  8. Once the request is reviewed, you will receive a confirmation email indicating whether it was approved, normally within 24 hours of the request.
    The time is not reserved until a request is approved. It is the responsibility of the researcher to verify that his/her session block has been correctly granted.


Administrative team

The staff at the BIC is dedicated to helping you get your project started and see that you get the help you need to be successful.

helen.elina [at] (Helen Elina), Ph.D Manager, Finance and Administration 514-398-2444
bic-finance.mni [at] (Stacey Peixoto & Judy Barany) BIC Reservations Coordinators 514-398-1602



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