Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) is well known to the general public for its application in medical imaging (MRI) and is widely used for determining molecular structures in chemistry and biology, where high magnetic fields are applied to increase the sensitivity and the resolution of the technique. In solid state physics, NMR is an extraordinarily powerful microscopic probe of the electronic properties, and the particularly intense magnetic fields available at LNCMI for NMR are rather used to induce and study new quantum phases of matter and to control the transitions between them. These field-induced phenomena occur in correlated electron systems and they include novel quantum magnetic states (Bose-Einstein condensates, magnetization plateau phases, supersolid phases), field induced and/or modified superconductivity (Jaccarino-Peter compensation effect, FFLO phase), quantum-Hall effect, spin and charge density waves in low dimensional conductors, as well as the competition between charge order and superconductivity in high Tc superconductors.
The high-field NMR facility at LNCMI-Grenoble extends the magnetic field range provided by superconducting magnets (17 T NMR magnets available at LNCMI) up to the highest available magnetic field in the lab (currently 35 T for NMR), at temperatures down to 40 mK, all within a spatial and temporal homogeneity of 40 ppm over 1-2 mm. Options for enhanced resolution NMR of 10 ppm / 10 mm sample, required by solid state chemistry, are also available and under further development.
Fig. 1 NMR spectra reveal magnetic structure in the "magnetization plateau" of SrCu2(BO3)2
[K. Kodama et al., Science 298, 395 (2002)].