Development and performance of a 129-GHz dynamic nuclear polarizer in an ultra-wide bore superconducting magnet

Lloyd L. Lumata, Richard Martin, Ashish K. Jindal, Zoltan Kovacs, Mark S. Conradi, Matthew E. Merritt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Objective: We sought to build a dynamic nuclear polarization system for operation at 4.6 T (129 GHz) and evaluate its efficiency in terms of 13C polarization levels using free radicals that span a range of ESR linewidths.

Materials and methods: A liquid helium cryostat was placed in a 4.6 T superconducting magnet with a 150-mm warm bore diameter. A 129-GHz microwave source was used to irradiate 13C enriched samples. Temperatures close to 1 K were achieved using a vacuum pump with a 453-m3/h roots blower. A hyperpolarized 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) signal was detected using a saddle coil and a Varian VNMRS console operating at 49.208 MHz. Samples doped with free radicals BDPA (1,3-bisdiphenylene-2-phenylallyl), trityl OX063 (tris{8-carboxyl-2,2,6,6-benzo(1,2-d:4,5-d)-bis(1,3)dithiole-4-yl}methyl sodium salt), galvinoxyl ((2,6-di-tert-butyl-α-(3,5-di-tert-butyl-4-oxo-2,5-cyclohexadien-1-ylidene)-p-tolyloxy), 2,2-diphenylpicrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and 4-oxo-TEMPO (4-Oxo-2,2,6,6-tetramethyl-1-piperidinyloxy) were assayed. Microwave dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) spectra and solid-state 13C polarization levels for these samples were determined.

Results: 13C polarization levels close to 50 % were achieved for [1-13C]pyruvic acid at 1.15 K using the narrow electron spin resonance (ESR) linewidth free radicals trityl OX063 and BDPA, while 10–20 % 13C polarizations were achieved using galvinoxyl, DPPH and 4-oxo-TEMPO.

Conclusion: At this field strength free radicals with smaller ESR linewidths are still superior for DNP of 13C as opposed to those with linewidths that exceed that of the 1H Larmor frequency.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)195-205
Number of pages11
JournalMagnetic Resonance Materials in Physics, Biology and Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2015


  • Electron spin resonance
  • Free radicals
  • Hyperpolarization
  • Nuclear magnetic resonance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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