From large and ultra-cold to small and convenient
Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy is one fundamental analytical tool for the structure elucidation of chemical compounds and biochemical systems. Recent developments in magnet and NMR technology have made available high-performance spectrometers with ultimate Larmor frequencies higher than 1 GHz. In parallel, however, acquisition costs and maintenance costs grew exponentially according to the available magnet field strength. Hence, both the costs and the sensitivity of these devices did not allow a meaningful application of NMR spectroscopy in an industrial environment until recently. Roughly 10 years ago so-called medium performance benchtop NMR spectrometers entered the market as a low-cost alternative, at first for educational applications at universities only. Permanent magnets substitute the cryogenic components in high performance spectrometers and thus reduce costs in acquisition and maintenance to a fractional amount.
"We use benchtop NMR technology as small-sized, yet powerful analytical tool for continuous flow applications in the chemical industry."
Medium performance NMR spectrometers are commercially available with a magnet configuration that allows Lamor frequencies up to 80 MHz for 1H NMR analysis. Meanwhile 2D NMR analysis can be done as well, e.g. COSY, HSQC and DOSY. Importantly, various NMR-active nuclei can be analyzed and allow a detailed structure elucidation of chemical compounds.