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Click here to see General IMSERC Policies


A basic NMR training is required before a user is granted with NMR access. Please consult with the NMR training page . If you wish to conduct NMR experiments with different sample temperatures, IMSERC staff is the ONLY personnel who may train you how to do this. To apply, simply reserve your experiment time and coordinate with Yuyang or Yongbo to make sure he is available when you start. This should take less than 15 minutes.

NMR tube pickup

In order to comply with the requirements for the disposal of contaminated waste at Northwestern, the users are required to pick up their samples from IMSERC after the experiments are finished. The operation procedure is illustrated in the flowchart . Following rules apply:
1. All NMR tubes must be labelled with the NetID of the user.
2. All NMR samples run on the Ag500 or X500 must be collected within 72 hours of the experiment associated with that sample being run.
3. All samples run on the other spectrometers in the facility must be removed by the user immediately after their experimental time has finished. The slot #50 to 60 on HFCN600 are reserved for samples doing long time experiments, please do not use these positions and do not remove samples from them!     
Please check out the details from the offical policy document .

Reporting broken glass

To ensure that the NMR's remain available and performing at a high level, users must report to IMSERC staff any incident involving broken glass around NMR instruments, whether you broke something yourself or observe broken glass in the NMR area. The policies ensure that the delicate glass pieces inside the spectrometer are not damaged and that users are leaving spectrometers ready for the next experiment. Failure to follow these policies can result in days to weeks of downtime as probes must be inspected for contamination, or worse yet, sent back to the vendor for repair. If you break glass and report to us, you are helping us to bring the instrument to service at earliest possible time and there will never be any punishment for making a human mistake. Failure to report issues like the ones listed above are one of the few policy breaches that can result in suspension of NMR privileges. We prefer that you call a NMR staff member or Director to set up a response after a problem, but email is acceptable if you cannot reach someone. When broken glasses is not reported, we assume there is glass pieces inside probe. To check and clean up the probe, we have to take down the system. The first unpleasant consequence of doing so is the instrument down time, which could easily be a few days for system with cryoprobe. In addition, we take increased risk of damaging parts or possibly not being able to bring it back online. In these cases, IMSERC staff will be following up with users who either broke the glassware originally or subsequent users who fail to report an issue with visible glass in the NMR area.


Ag500, No Reservation needed
Day time : 9am-9pm, 10 minutes limit per sample, 30 minutes or 12 samples limit per user per day, whichever is less. Night time: 9pm-9am, no limit, no ANY day queue experiment allowed in these slots! Sunday is redeemed as night time.
X500, No Reservation needed
Day time: 9am-9pm, 20 minutes maximum per sample, 60 minutes or 12 samples maximum per user per daytime, whichever is less. Night time: 9pm-9am, no limit, Sunday is redeemed as night time.
A600 and Au400, Reservation needed
Half hour minimum, reservation time can be up to 24 hours, or 48 hours if combine with weekend, maximum 48 hours per user per week.
Hg400 Solids, Reservation needed
Half hour minimum, reservation time can be up to 24 hours, or 48 hours if combine with weekend, maximum 48 hours per user per week.
HFCN600, primarily for BioNMR, Reservation needed
One hour minimum, reservation time can be up to 96 hours per user per week. If you need special request on any of above instruments, please contact NMR staff for assistance.