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Enlightening Science

The European XFEL is a research facility currently under construction in the Hamburg area, Germany. From 2017 on, it will generate extremely intense X-ray flashes to be used by researchers from all over the world.

The facility

The X-ray flashes will be produced in a 3.4-kilometre-long facility. Most of it will be housed in tunnels deep below ground. Three sites provide access to the tunnels and the experiment stations. (More)

Generation of X-ray flashes

Initially, a particle accelerator brings electrons to almost the speed of light. These electrons are then made to follow a tight slalom course on which they emit intense flashes of X-ray radiation. (More)


The European XFEL will open up completely new areas of experimentation. Its X-ray flashes will allow to map atomic details of viruses, film chemical reactions and study the processes in the interior of planets. (More)

The Company

The European XFEL is being constructed by the European XFEL GmbH. For the construction and operation, the company collaborates closely with DESY and many other institutions.

News archive

  • 27 March 2015 | News
    Major Chinese research centre signs collaboration agreement | More
  • 05 March 2015 | News
    Team uses X-ray laser to watch electrons travel across molecule | More
  • 04 March 2015 | News
    Researchers snap giant virus in 3-D | More
  • 18 February 2015 | News
    European XFEL celebrates topping out of headquarters building | More
  • 11 February 2015 | News
    Taking high-speed snapshots of living cells with an X-ray laser | More
  • 30 January 2015 | News
    2015 Users’ Meeting attendance climbs higher | More
  • 20 January 2015 | News
    FLASH—the first optically synchronised free-electron laser | More
  • 22 December 2014 | News
    Ultrafast X-ray detector successfully tested | More
  • 18 December 2014 | News
    The United Kingdom joins European XFEL | More
  • 19 November 2014 | News
    Thick concrete walls against the power of a trillion light bulbs | More
  • 18 November 2014 | News
    Scientists X-ray tiny organelles of bacteria | More
  • 13 November 2014 | Announcement
    Peter Paul Ewald Fellowships for FEL Science | More
  • 12 November 2014 | News
    “Cookie Box” monitors ultrashort light pulses | More
  • European XFEL Newsletter
    Subscribe to our newsletter and we will keep you posted! | More


  • 18 - 20 July 2015
    ISWAMP - Intense field, Short Wavelength Atomic and ... | More

Recent publications


  • DESY-Bahrenfeld
  • Osdorfer Born
  • Schenefeld East
  • Schenefeld West
  • Experiment hall


Osdorfer Born

Osdorfer Born

Schenefeld East

Schenefeld East

Schenefeld West

Schenefeld West

Experiment hall

Experiment hall

Strong partners

The European XFEL and DESY collaborate on the construction, commissioning and operation of the facility. More

User Consortia

User consortia will be able to contribute to the European XFEL X-ray instruments. Contributions by User Consortia are regulated by a clear set of guidelines.

Job Offers

  • Deadline: 17 May 2015
    Two Instrument Scientists (f/m)
  • Deadline: 30 Apr 2015
    Scientific Instrument Support Scientist (f/m)
  • Deadline: 01 May 2015
    Doctorate Candidate (f/m)