Harnessing asymmetric N-heterocyclic carbene ligands to optimise SABRE hyperpolarisation

Chin Min Wong, Marianna Fekete, Rhianna Nelson-Forde, Mark R. D. Gatus, Peter J. Rayner, Adrian C. Whitwood, Simon B. Duckett*, Barbara A. Messerle

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
9 Downloads (Pure)


The catalytic signal amplification by reversible exchange process has become widely used for the hyperpolarisation of small molecules to improve their magnetic resonance detectability. It harnesses the latent polarisation of parahydrogen, and involves the formation of a labile metal complex that often contains an N-heterocyclic carbene (NHC) ligand (e.g. [Ir(H)2(NHC)(pyridine)3]Cl), which act as a polarisation transfer catalyst. Unfortunately, if the target molecule is too bulky, binding to the catalyst is poor and the hyperpolarisation yield is therefore low. We illustrate here the behaviour of a series of asymmetric NHC containing catalysts towards 3,4- and 3,5-lutidine in order to show how catalyst design can be used to dramatically improve the outcome of this catalytic process for sterically encumbered ligands.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4925-4933
Number of pages9
JournalCatalysis Science and Technology
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 7 Oct 2018

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Publisher 2018. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Harnessing asymmetric N-heterocyclic carbene ligands to optimise SABRE hyperpolarisation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this