University of Ottawa NMR Facility Web Site

Please feel free to make suggestions for future posts by emailing Glenn Facey.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Job Opening - NMR Technician, University of Ottawa


Job Opening - University of Ottawa NMR Technician

December 19, 2017
The Faculty of Science of the University of Ottawa is seeking a technician for its very active Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) facility.  The NMR facility serves more than 30 active research groups and consists of 8 Bruker NMR instruments ranging in field from 200 to 600 MHz as well as a Bruker EPR spectrometer.  The facility conducts a wide range of modern NMR experiments on both solids and liquids.   As the NMR technician, you must hold at least an M.Sc. degree in chemistry or a related field (Ph.D. preferred) with at least two years experience in either one or both high resolution or solid state NMR spectroscopy.  You must be enthusiastic, highly motivated and work well both independently and in groups.  Extensive computer experience is mandatory.  As you will be interacting daily with students and faculty, you must have excellent interpersonal skills as well as excellent oral and written communication skills.  Reporting to the NMR facility manager, you will collect routine NMR data as a service, assist students and answer questions, train new users of the equipment, fill the magnets weekly with liquid nitrogen, help with equipment maintenance (including liquid helium fills), maintain a data archive, keep accurate time and usage records, and assist the NMR facility manager in the general operation of the facility.  French/ English bilingualism is a definite asset.  The position begins on March 16, 2018 and is a renewable annual contract.  The annual salary range for this position is $60,201 - $76,044.   For consideration, please email your CV and cover letter to Glenn Facey at  Please include the names and complete contact information for three references.

Dr. Glenn A. Facey
NMR Facility Manager,
Department of Chemistry and Biomolecular Sciences, University of Ottawa
10 Marie Curie, Ottawa, Ontario, K1N 6N5

Monday, December 11, 2017

NMR of Cranberries. Why Are They So Sour?

Arguably, one of the highlights of the Christmas season is a delicious turkey dinner.  The most common condiment for the turkey is a tart, mouth watering cranberry sauce.  Have you ever wondered why cranberries are so sour?  The sour taste comes from organic acids.  These can easily be detected in the 1H and 13C NMR spectra of cranberries.  The figure below shows the 1H and 13C NMR spectra of a D2O extract of crushed fresh cranberries.
Malic acid, citric acid, quinic acid and benzoic acid can easily be identified in the spectra.  These account for the sour taste.  Glucose, fructose and sucrose can also be identified however, the taste is dominated by the acids.  There are of course many other compounds present in cranberries at much lower concentrations than the acids and sugars.  Many of these account for the brilliant red color and antioxidant properties of this delicious healthy berry.  Enjoy your Christmas turkey accompanied by tasty, tart, cranberries!