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NMR Facility

The Department of Chemistry houses a world-class nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) facility with outstanding instrumental power and experimental capabilities. Occupying 2,606 square feet, the facility’s infrastructure is made of special non-magnetizable stainless steel.

The NMR Facility is critical to many wide-ranging research programs and supports almost 300 users from chemistry and other departments at Princeton University, as well as from several outside companies that are members of chemistry’s Industrial Associates Program.

We offer seven state-of-the-art NMR spectrometers uniquely configured to meet the needs of our researchers with a high level of automation. Instruments include a 300 MHz, a 400 MHz, four 500 MHz (A1, A2, A3 and A500) and an 800 MHz spectrometer. Between them, the spectrometers allow users to probe many nuclei, such as 1H, 13C, 15N, 31P, 2H, 109Ag, 14N and even allow for double resonance 1H/19F experiments.

Each 500 MHz spectrometer is equipped with a 120-seat autosampler and the 800 MHz spectrometer is equipped with a 24-seat autosampler to facilitate quick turnaround from sample drop-off to data acquisition. The 400 MHz machine possesses an automated capillary NMR (Protasis) for microsamples that can accommodate high-throughput compound library screening.

All spectrometers are open for walk-up use, either by setting up the sample to run in the queue or run the experiment manually. User-friendly programs facilitate both options, though expert onsite assistance is also readily available.  Sample tuning, lock, and shimming are fully automated processes.

Once the experiment is complete, the data can be obtained in three ways: By email, by downloading to a remote personal computer through a secure connection, or from the facility’s own computer cluster.  For offline data processing, we provide general licenses for MNova (MestreLab), Bio-Rad, Modgraph, Schrodinger and Umetrics.

Our spectrometers require liquid helium to cool the magnets and we recover 60 to 80 percent of the helium in a closed system as a cost-saving and environmentally friendly measure. The facility receives financial support for new instrumentation from Princeton University and the Department of Chemistry, and maintains its operation from user fees based on experiment time.