Chemical Test Develops Magnetic Traits

August 2005
Fire Chief;Aug2005, Vol. 49 Issue 8, p20
Trade Publication
The article reports that a new portable device may soon give homeland protection teams a better sense of chemical dangers. The tool makes it possible for the first time to perform nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy in the field on samples of any size. This instrument, developed in collaboration by researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the University of California, Berkeley, and the Institute for Technical Chemistry and Macromolecular Chemistry in Aachen, Germany, would be capable of achieving NMR spectral resolution with a palm-size, open-configuration probing head, important considerations to security officials on the front line. Conventional NMR requires costly magnets and invasive procedures, as samples must be placed inside a small magnet bore. A portable "ex-situ" NMR sensor alleviates such restrictions, however, offering open access to arbitrary-sized samples and allowing NMR for non-invasive applications such as detecting concealed explosives,


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