Bruker DRX 500

The DRX 500 instrument was produced in 1993 and installed in our laboratories in September 1994.  The magnet quenched slowly in March 2010 and was recharged when the AVII 400 magnet was energized.  Taken together with the problem of obtaining a replacemnet shim system for the magnet and the time consuming shim and pulse optimization of the instrument we lost more than one year of instrument time. 

The DRX 500 unshielded magnet with Senior Engineer Dirk Petersen

The instrument is controlled by:

TopSpin 1.3 patch level 10.

The DRX 500 instrument (as well as the DPX 200 and DPX 300 instruments) was originally installed with a SGI computer running XwinNmr version 0.9 and has gone through almost all XwinNmr upgrades (1.0, 1.1, 1.3 (actually the most reliable one!) 2.0, 2.6, 3.0 and finally version 3.5). Sometime during all these software upgrades the SGI computer was replaced with a Dell PC running Windows 2000, converted (not a clean installation !) to XP followed by the current dual core HP PC which was too fast for the console resulting in some TCU error messages. Installation of TopSpin 1.3 with a special patch (patch level 8) from Bruker-Biospin solved this problem however. The ease of operation resulting from the transition from the Irix operating system to the Windows operating system is one of the best things that ever have happened to the NMR staff.

We believed that the instrument was configured with three "complete" channels and a deuterium lock channel when we purchased the instrument. The instrument however was not delivered with a HPPR slice for the 3rd channel (15N) so it was impossible to run 1H13C and 1H15N 2D experiments without switching cables between the experiments, thus preventing these experiments to be run in automation over night.  In 2010 and 2011 the slice for 15N  was purchased and finally installed and it is now (2011) possible to run experiments with simultaneous decoupling on both 13C and 15N  channels as well as running 1H13C and 1H15N  2D-experiments after each other without any cable switch.

The instrument is equipped with home built aluminum plates at the top and bottom of the magnet, in these plates warm water is circulating to avoid cool down of the O-rings - when we are doing low temperature experiments. The home built system does also include a flow system for dry air to be blown along the shim system inside the magnet - to avoid high and low temperatures in the shim system when performing experiments at both high and low temperatures.

The newer nmr instrument AVII 600 is alternatively be controlled by a Dell Windows 7 64 bit PC ( - named after Clemens Anklin )  running TopSpin 3.0 patch level 4.  The main improvement with this software  seems to be a much more automatically configuredprosol table, which also contains most if not all shaped pulse types by default.  

Older software such as those used on DRX 500 are inferior in this respect and it is extremely hard to figure out what shapes to be used in each pulse program for the non specialist who wants to run advanced experiments. Hopefully this 3.0 prosol table on AVII 600 will make it possible to define the shapes in a logical way on the DRX 500 as well as AVI 600 instruments which cannot run Topspin 3.X. 

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Home built aluminum plate


Bruker 5 mm BBO broad band observe probe - 1H and almost any other nuclei observation, decoupling of any chosen nuclei

Bruker 5 mm BBO broad band observe probe, with z-gradient acessory - 1H and almost any other nuclei observation, decoupling of any chosen nuclei. This probe is a gift from NTNU/St. Olav Hospital in 2011

Bruker 2.5 mm BBI broad band inverse probe - 1H observation, decoupling of any chosen nuclei

Bruker 5 mm TXI probe with Z-gradient accessory - 1H observation, decoupling of 13C and/or 15N

Bruker 8 mm TXI probe, with Z-gradient accessory - 1H observation, decoupling of 13C and/or 15N

Bruker 5 mm BBO, broad band observe probe - special low temperature probe with magnet/shimsystem temperature stabilizing flow of glycol inside the probe, 1H detuned to include 19F frequency. 1H, 19F and almost any other nuclei observable, decoupling of almost any chosen nuclei

Bruker 10 mm BBLr, broad band observe probe with Z-gradient accessory, 1H observation with or without combination with observation of low frequency nuclei, such as 39K, 41K, 57Fe, 103Rh and 183W. Analog filters are needed for each nuclei. Five filters are promised from Bruker - but deliivered only when needed. Currently we are only in possession of the Fe filter.


A Sixpack sample changer was originally installed, it did however start to malfunction after approximately five years of use. It seems like the polymeric material in the "Sixpack" have expanded resulting in increased friction between the movable parts. After many years of in operation the sixpack seems to be repairable due to spare parts from Bruker Biospin - sweden. Pneumatic anti vibration feet are used on the magnet.

Published Jan. 17, 2011 1:56 PM - Last modified Feb. 28, 2015 11:26 AM