Researchers from the University of Chicago managed to line-up nuclear spins in a consistent and controllable way, on silicon-carbide, a high-performance and practical material. The technique uses light to polarize the spins - and is performed at room temperature.
Nuclear spins are normally randomly oriented, and the known methods of aligning them are complicated - and not entirely reliable. This is mostly because the spin of a nucleus is tiny - about 1,000 times smaller than the spin of an electron. The new technique is relatively simple and manages to align the spin of more than 99% spins in a Silicon Carbide nuclei.