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Cross-Faculty Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (CFNMR)

22 August 2017 By Richard Myhill

LIYSF holds scientific visits around Imperial College London to allow our participants to engage with science on a more practical level. LIYSF offer our students several opportunities to visit a variety of laboratories which they sign up to beforehand in areas they want to specialise in. This opportunity allows each student to gain a closer insight into specialist laboratories and areas they may not have had the chance to explore before.

Cross-Faculty Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (CFNMR)

The CFNMR is a facility used by various research groups across Imperial College and abroad to identify large and incredibly complicated biomolecules such as proteins.

Students were met by the manager of the CFNMR facility, Dr. Yinqi Xu and were shown around the facility to explore what equipment was used and how.

There were several machines in the facility, the most powerful being the 800MHz NMR machine worth several millions of pounds.

Dr. Yingqi Xu was excited to show our participants the resolving power of the 800MHz NMR and was even more excited to show them the 500 cavity auto-sampling robot in the top of it.

He explained how the process of analysing samples was made much easier for him using these machines. The robot on the top can run the samples and collect data for Dr. Xu overnight without him needing to be there to supervise, increasing thethroughput of experiments for the facility.

After exposing the sample to various magnetic fields the machine collects a 2-dimensional NMR trace (two frequency axes rather than one like in traditional 1-dimensional NMR) which can be interpreted and used to determine the structure of the molecules inside the sample.

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