Magnetic Resonance Facility Service Interruptions

The fire sprinkler installation project is coming Oct. 5 – Nov. 13 to the second floor of the Matthews building, which will heavily impact the research capabilities of the Magnetic Resonance Facility. During this time, the second floor of Matthews will be off-limits, as it will be an active construction zone. Below, you will find important dates and details of what kinds of experiments will be available or unavailable during the project. The NMR staff and the facilities committee have worked together to formulate a plan for this project that will allow for a continuation of routine NMR data collection for nearly the entire project, but there will be a period of time when the entire facility will be off limits.
Sprinkler installation project details:
Project Overview:
• Project Phase 1: three weeks downtime to work on outer part of second floor Matthews Oct. 5th – 23rd
– only two 400 MHz spectrometers will be available, both with large SampleJet sample changing robots.
• Project Phase 2: two weeks of downtime for work on the inner section of second floor Matthews Oct. 26th – Nov. 5th
– two 500 MHz and one 600 MHz spectrometer will be available, all with smaller sample changing robots.
• Project Phase 3: one final week for insulation installation and testing. All of second floor Matthews will be closed Nov. 9th – 13th
• these dates assume that the project will be on time and that it will go according to plan. It’s important to recognize that this is a very complex installation requiring the construction team to navigate the field lines of live, powerful, cryogenically-cooled superconducting magnets. We will be communicating any changes to this plan if they arise.
Projected Capabilities During the Project
• routine sample throughput is anticipated to be maintained throughout project phases 1 and 2.
• no manual use of any instrument for project phases 1-3.
– only NMR staff can access second floor Matthews during project phases 1 and 2, as the floor will be an active construction zone. NMR staff will have construction safety training to provide oversight of work around the magnets, enabling them to be on the floor and to continue measurements on routine samples.
• periods of missing capability will occur:
– low C13 sensitivity during project phase 2
– some issues for odd pH, high salt, paramagnetic samples during project phase 2
– no variable temperature (kinetics, exchange, ligand binding, etc.) for project phases 1-3
– Magnetic Resonance Facility completely closed during project phase 3
• NMRFAM will provide backup for high priority needs, but their facility is not capable of handling the huge numbers of samples generated in our department.
Further Important Details
• project phase 1: C13 (and H1) sensitivity will be limited, so lowest concentration samples will not be viable
• project phase 2: samples with unusual pH, high salt, paramagnetism, etc. may cause difficulties for some of the available instruments. Please notify NMR staff if submitted samples have any of these features.
C13 (and H1) sensitivity will be greatly reduced during this phase. It’s advisable to avoid low-concentration samples at this time. NMRFAM may be able to help in this regard, so for very high priority needs such samples could be run there.
• project phases 1-3: we will not be able to support variable temperature work, and this work cannot be done at NMRFAM (except over a very limited range). This involves kinetics, ligand binding, chemical exchange, or other research requiring different temperatures. Planning for projects of this type should begin now to see how they might be accomplished.
Some other types of NMR experiments will not be possible during phases 1-3: e.g., light experiments, noesy1d, very long or very fast experiments.
There will be no solid-state NMR, SQUID, EPR, or Mößbauet done during the sprinkler installation project. NMR staff are prioritizing solid-state NMR now in an effort to have those users get ahead prior to the delay.
Can we shift all of our NMR projects to NMRFAM?
Short answer: No. It is important to recognize that NMRFAM is not set up to handle the number and types of samples that we run in Chemistry. They can provide backup if needed, but we can’t count on sample numbers and more importantly turn around to approach ours; turn around would likely be overnight for any experiments with many samples.
Contact the following people for additional information:
John F. Berry and Charlie Fry
Directors, Chemistry Instrument Center