The Facility & Equipment
Our facility spans three locations, supporting a total of five NMR spectrometers and one EPR spectrometer
Facility staff provide training to operate the instruments, process data, and prepare samples. We hold two types of regular training: Level1 covers use of the autosampler-equipped spectrometers, and Level2 covers manual operation of the other spectrometers. Under COVID, all training is conducted one-one-one with the facility manager, and scheduling is arranged on an individual basis. Training for specific techniques (such as “variable temperature” operation) is available by arrangement with the facility manager.
“I reserve instrument time for an extended period, then use it to manually run experiments that require extra attention and time. I may leave it to run unattended for several hours, perhaps at high or low temperature.”
Here’s a tip for you when acquiring long experiments manually: use the Autoshim feature. Located in the BSMS control window, clicking “Start” will ensure your shim quality stays good over long periods (~4+ hours). But when you’re done, be sure to click “Start” again to toggle it off, or else it’ll continue operating when the next user is trying to run, which will surprise them and give them inconvenience.
The most common 2D experiments on the automated systems work best if you choose the one whose names end in “-opt”; these experiments examine a preliminary PROTON8 experiment and reset the 1H spectrum window in the 2D so you get the best resolution. It’s very easy to set up, but things can go wrong if you make changes or decide you need a 2D after the 1H 1D has already been acquired. Here are some tips for success.
Many chemical structure questions can be answered with 1H-1H distance estimates derived from the 1D NOESY experiment. There are a variety of ways to set up this experiment, but we now have two short videos that UChicago users can access with their phones at the spectrometer – no homework or special prep required.