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A microcontroller system for the automation of transient effect determination of the spin-lattice relaxation time using continuous wave NMR
Steven Parslow, Michael Newton, Robert Morris
Nottingham Trent University, School of Science and Technology, Clifton Lane, Nottingham NG11 8NS UK

MDPI AG, 10.3390/ecsa-5-05636

The control electronics for low field pulsed NMR systems, commonly referred to as the console, are designed to be wide band and highly programmable. The process of making spin lattice relaxation time (T1) measurements with such a pulsed system usually use recovery sequences that will typically take many minutes to give a single T1 value. A simple transient effect method for the determination of the spin-lattice relaxation time using continuous wave NMR with a marginal oscillator, known as TEDSpiL, was recently reported (doi:10.1002/mrc.4594). Such a system measures a parameter, called Tx, that is related to T1 and allows T1 to be determined with the aid of calibration samples. For such a system, the process of making the Tx measurement only takes a few seconds and does not require variable parameters so is ideal for implementing in microcontroller code. In this presentation, we demonstrate that TEDSpiL may be automated using two microcontrollers from the Teensy family. One microcontroller is used to generate a magnetic field sweep voltage and a trigger pulse for the second microcontroller that is used to record the data and calculate the value of Tx. Whilst the Tx value is not a direct equivalent for T1, there are applications where such a method may provide a suitable cost effective, low power and portable measurement technique.

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