Monday, January 6, 2014

Dynamic nuclear polarization using frequency modulation at 3.34T

Hovav, Y., et al., Dynamic nuclear polarization using frequency modulation at 3.34T. J Magn Reson, 2013. 238C(0): p. 94-105.

During dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) experiments polarization is transferred from unpaired electrons to their neighboring nuclear spins, resulting in dramatic enhancement of the NMR signals. While in most cases this is achieved by continuous wave (cw) irradiation applied to samples in fixed external magnetic fields, here we show that DNP enhancement of static samples can improve by modulating the microwave (MW) frequency at a constant field of 3.34T. The efficiency of triangular shaped modulation is explored by monitoring the 1H signal enhancement in frozen solutions containing different TEMPOL radical concentrations at different temperatures. The optimal modulation parameters are examined experimentally and under the most favorable conditions a threefold enhancement is obtained with respect to constant frequency DNP in samples with low radical concentrations. The results are interpreted using numerical simulations on small spin systems. In particular, it is shown experimentally and explained theoretically that: (i) The optimal modulation frequency is higher than the electron spin-lattice relaxation rate. (ii) The optimal modulation amplitude must be smaller than the nuclear Larmor frequency and the EPR line-width, as expected. (iii) The MW frequencies corresponding to the enhancement maxima and minima are shifted away from one another when using frequency modulation, relative to the constant frequency experiments.