Parahydrogen (pH2) is a convenient and cost-efficient source for magnetic resonance signal enhancement. Previous work showed that transient interaction of pH2 with a metal organic complex in a signal amplification by reversible exchange (SABRE) experiment enabled more than 10% polarization for some 15N molecules. Here, we analyzed a variant of SABRE, consisting of an outer magnetic field alternating between a low field of ~1 µT, where polarization transfer is expected to take place, and a higher field >50 µT (alt-SABRE). These magnetic fields affected the amplitude and frequency of polarization transfer. Deviation of a lower magnetic field from a “perfect” condition of level anti-crossing increases the frequency of polarization transfer that can be exploited for polarization of short-lived transient SABRE complexes. Moreover, the coherences responsible for polarization transfer at a lower field persisted during magnetic field variation and continued their spin evolution at higher field with a frequency of 2.5 kHz at 54 µT. The latter should be taken into consideration for an efficient alt-SABRE. Theoretical and experimental findings were exemplified with Iridium N-heterocyclic carbene SABRE complex and 15N-acetonitrile, where a 30 % higher 15N polarization with alt-SABRE compared to common SABRE was reached.

Pravdivtsev, A.; Kempf, N.; Plaumann, M.; Bernarding, J.; Scheffler, K.; Hövener, J.-B.; Buckenmaier, K.
Coherent evolution of signal amplification by reversible exchange in two alternating fields (alt-SABRE).
ChemPhysChem 22 (23), S. 2381 - 2386 (2021)
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