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Optimal control of the signal-to-noise ratio per unit time of a spin 1/2 particle: The crusher gradient and the radiation damping cases
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We show to which extent the signal to noise ratio per unit time of a spin 1/2 particle can be maximized. We consider a cyclic repetition of experiments made of a measurement followed by a radio-frequency magnetic field excitation of the system, in the case of unbounded amplitude. In the periodic regime, the objective of the control problem is to design the initial state of the system and the pulse sequence which leads to the best signal to noise performance. We focus on two specific issues relevant in nuclear magnetic resonance, the crusher gradient and the radiation damping cases. Optimal control techniques are used to solve this non-standard control problem. We discuss the optimality of the Ernst angle solution, which is commonly applied in spectroscopic and medical imaging applications. In the radiation damping situation, we show that in some cases, the optimal solution differs from the Ernst one.
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