Nuclear Magnetic Resonance

What is nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and what can we do with it? This video, produced for the occasion of the official opening of the uNMR-NL research facility at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, shows how, with NMR spectroscopy, we can determine the structure of molecules to help develop the materials, food and medicine of the future.

How does this work?

An NMR spectrometer works using the same principle as an MRI scanner in a hospital, in order to visualise the structure of molecules. Molecules are the foundation for life and for the materials that we as humans can make. In order to understand the role a specific protein plays in the development of cancer, or why a new nanomaterial displays certain properties, you have to understand the structure of the molecules.

The uNMR-NL research facility at Utrecht University was opened by State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science of the Netherlands Sander Dekker on Thursday, 5 November, 2015. With its ultra-powerful 22 Tesla magnet, uNMR-NL is among the world’s leading NMR facilities, allowing researchers to study very large molecules for the first time, with an extremely high spectral resolution. The magnet can be used for chemical, biological, and materials science research. The uNMR-NL facility was set up by the universities of Utrecht, Eindhoven, Leiden, Nijmegen and Wageningen in cooperation with the public-private institute for analytical chemistry COAST and is part of the National Road Map programme for large-scale research facilities of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research NWO.

For the ‘Bijvoet Center for Biomolecular Research’ we created this arty science video.


Utrecht University


Director I: Jesper buijvoets
Director II: Caspar de Zeeuw
Model: Cynthia Sahan
D.O.P.: Peter J. Reese
Animator: David Garcia Torrico
Sound design, mixing & mastering: Maria Kramer
Producer: Rense Buijvoets

Lab, Science
Bijvoet Center For Biomolecular Research, NMR, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, NWO, uNMR-NL, Utrecht University