One-Shot Resin 3D-Printed Stators for Low-Cost Fabrication of Magic-Angle Spinning NMR Probeheads


Additive manufacturing such as three-dimensional (3D)-printing has revolutionized the fast and low-cost fabrication of otherwise expensive NMR parts. High-resolution solid-state NMR spectroscopy demands rotating the sample at a specific angle (54.74°) inside a pneumatic turbine, which must be designed to achieve stable and high spinning speeds without mechanical friction. Moreover, instability of the sample rotation often leads to crashes, resulting in costly repairs. Producing these intricate parts requires traditional machining, which is time-consuming, costly, and relies on specialized labor. Herein, we show that 3D-printing can be used to fabricate the sample holder housing (stator) in one shot, while the radiofrequency (RF) solenoid was constructed using conventional materials available in electronics stores. The 3D-printed stator, equipped with a homemade RF coil, showed remarkable spinning stability, yielding high-quality NMR data. At a cost below 5 €, the 3D-printed stator represents a cost reduction of over 99% compared to repaired commercial stators, illustrating the potential of 3D-printing for mass-producing affordable magic-angle spinning stators.


Daniel Pereira, Mariana Sardo, Ildefonso Marín-Montesinos, and Luís Mafra*

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This work was developed within the scope of project CICECO-Aveiro Institute of Materials, UIDB/50011/2020,UIDP/50011/2020 & LA/P/0006/2020, financed by national funds through the FCT/MEC (PIDDAC). The NMR spectrometers are part of the National NMR Network (PTNMR) and are partially supported by Infrastructure Project 022161 (cofinanced by FEDER through COMPETE 2020, POCI and PORL and FCT through PIDDAC). This work has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (Grant Agreement 865974). FCT is also acknowledged by M.S. for an Assistant Research Position (CEECIND/00056/2020) and by D.P. for a Ph.D. Studentship (UI/BD/151048/2021).

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