Magnetic System Goes From Tallahassee to Korea

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Have you ever had that moment where you need to move a gigantic magnetic system from the second floor to the first? The National High Magnetic Field Laboratory had that problem, a problem they solved by using a forklift and some minor redecorating.

"This thing is too big to fit in the elevator. It weighs a couple of tons and so they had to knock the windows out to pull the thing out and hoist it out of here," said Alan G. Marshall, Directory of Ion Cyclotron Resonance Program at NHMFL.

The magnetic system is off to Korea after spending the last three years undergoing modifications in Tallahassee, a project by NHMFL and the Korean Basic Science Institute. The instrument will help Korean scientists develop a system to maintain research magnets.

"The magnet spreads out signals from different chemical substances in a mixture and so you can identify those and tell what they are like petroleum or blood, surface spinal fluid, any kind of complicated mixture, and if you know enough about what it's made out of then you can predict what it will do," added Marshall.

Once in Korea, scientists will apply the magnetic system to biological science.

"We hope it's going to be the world's best performing mass spectrometer so we can find out some type of clue for the disease and develop some discovery of new drugs," said Hyunsik Kim of KBSI.

Efforts scientist said they hope will yield the same success the workers had when lowering the magnetic system.