PhD Thesis Proposal – Marseille

Title: Enhancing NMR sensitivity with diamond nitrogen-vacancy centres 

Financing: Agence Nationale de la Recherche – Net Remuneration: ~1420 € / month

Starting Date: October 2020

Topic Description: Dynamic nuclear polarization is a powerful method that improves NMR sensitivity by transferring spin polarization from electrons to nuclei, but it is limited because it requires cryogenic temperatures and paramagnetic doping that alter resolution and sensitivity. A more advantageous approach would be to polarize a material directly from a substrate that is itself highly polarizable. In this context, synthetic diamonds containing NV (nitrogen-vacancy) centers appear to be ideal candidates as they allow this operation to be performed under laser illumination at room temperature. These spin polarizations could then be transferred from the diamond to another material, thus offering a general method for increasing NMR sensitivity. This thesis aims to overcome this challenge by combining new instrumentation and optimized diamond synthesis to maximize the spin polarization inside the diamond and to study its transfer from the diamond to an external material.

Environment: At the interface of the physico-chemistry of (nano)materials and spectroscopy, this thesis will take place on the St Jérôme campus in Marseille within the Institut de Chimie Radicalaire (UMR 7273) in close collaboration with the Institut de Recherche de Chimie Paris (UMR 8247), the Laboratoire des Sciences des Procédés et des Matériaux (UPR 3407), and the Laboratoire Charles Coulomb (UMR 5221). 

Application: To apply, please send a CV and a cover letter to Pr. Stéphane Viel ( Please also provide a copy of the results obtained during the Master’s course as well as 2 letters of recommendation.