Community Research Van

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Researchers can now access CTSI’s Community Research Van, a mobile health lab designed to help University of Minnesota research teams conduct health studies out in the community.

Download the application

What’s in the van

Community Research VanThe Community Research Van is designed exclusively for health studies and features:

  • SECA height/weight scale
  • Desk, laptop, and printer
  • Internet connectivity
  • Supplies for blood collection and blood pressure
  • Space for private interviews
  • 4G hotspot and laptop
  • Powered wheelchair lift
  • Gas-powered generate with external power ports for powering equipment in the van
  • Overhead ventilation
  • Thermostat to regulate temperature in the van
  • Private space for data collection and one-on-one interviews
  • Additional space available to accommodate a stationary bike or small treadmill 

This mobile health lab supports studies that address human health issues, and is available at no charge to qualifying research teams. 


  • Both University investigators and University-community research collaborations are eligible to request the mobile health lab for studies within the five-state area.
  • Contact for help finding a community collaborator such as a physician, clinic, nonprofit, or other community entity, or within the University. 

What studies are a fit?

We support health research projects that:

  • Interact with the public, such as by collecting data through surveys, focus groups, biospecimens, anthropometric measurements, or other similar means.
  • Have the potential to significantly impact individual and population health in a concrete and tangible way.
  • Hold the promise of securing external grant support in order to develop long-term research and evaluation projects.

How to request the van for your study 

You can request to use the van at no charge to your research team by sending a completed van application to

The application should be submitted as a single PDF and include the following components:

Applications will be reviewed within four weeks of submission.