Jardón-Álvarez, Daniel, Guy Reuveni, Adi Harchol, and Michal Leskes. “Enabling Natural Abundance 17O Solid-State NMR by Direct Polarization from Paramagnetic Metal Ions.” The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters 11, no. 14 (July 16, 2020): 5439–45.
Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) significantly enhances the sensitivity of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), increasing applications and quality of NMR as a characterization tool for materials. Efficient spin diffusion among the nuclear spins is considered to be essential for spreading the hyperpolarization throughout the sample enabling large DNP enhancements. This scenario mostly limits the polarization enhancement of low sensitivity nuclei in inorganic materials to the surface sites when the polarization source is an exogenous radical. In metal ions based DNP, the polarization agents are distributed in the bulk sample and act as both source of relaxation and of polarization enhancement. We have found that as long as the polarization agent is the main source of relaxation, the enhancement does not depend on the distance between the nucleus and dopant. As a consequence, the requirement of efficient spin diffusion is lifted and the entire sample can be directly polarized. We exploit this finding to measure high quality NMR spectra of 17O in the electrode material Li4Ti5O12 doped with Fe(III) despite its low abundance and long relaxation time.