The Fantastic Four: A Plug ‘N’ Play Set of Optimal Control Pulses for Enhancing NMN Spectroscopy

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We present highly robust, optimal control-based shaped pulses designed to replace all 90° and 180° hard pulses in a given pulse sequence for improved performance. Special attention was devoted to ensuring that the pulses can be simply substituted in a one-to-one fashion for the original hard pulses without any additional modification of the existing sequence. The set of four pulses for each nucleus therefore consists of 90° and 180° point-to-point (PP) and universal rotation (UR) pulses of identical duration. These 1 ms pulses provide uniform performance over resonance offsets of 20 kHz (1H) and 35 kHz (13C) and tolerate reasonably large radio frequency (RF) inhomogeneity/miscalibration of ±15% (1H) and ±10% (13C), making them especially suitable for NMR of small-to-medium-sized molecules (for which relaxation effects during the pulse are negligible) at an accessible and widely utilized spectrometer field strength of 600 MHz. The experimental performance of conventional hard-pulse sequences is shown to be greatly improved by incorporating the new pulses, each set referred to as the Fantastic Four (Fanta4).



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