Biology lab (XBI)

The biological laboratories are located directly above the experiment hall. They host a large state-of-the-art wet lab area surrounded by specialized rooms and allow for sample preparation starting from cell culture, through centrifugation, protein purification and finally crystallisation, as well as the subsequent sample analysis.

Floor plan of the XBI lab

Wet Lab BSL1

Wet lab area offers lab bench space and general lab equipment, but also more specialised equipment such as plate and cuvette DLS devices, spectrophotometers and stereomicroscopes.

For the preparation of samples under anaerobic or other specific conditions, a glovebox is available.

Crystallisation Room

The crystallisation room is equipped with pipetting robots, crystal incubators and the latest SONICC device to enable rapid high-throughput crystallisation trials and protein crystal identification.

Crystallization room equipped with SONICC, crystal incubators and pipetting robots

Electron Microscopy Room

For the highest imaging demands, a JEOL 200kV cryo-TEM is available, together with a cryo plunger and an ultramicrotome. The room is shared with an AFM NanoWizard 4 from JPK.

To learn more about the available microscopes, see the dedicated microscopy page.

Sample Testing

Test chambers for aerosols, liquid jets and viscous jets are available.

Cold Room

Spacious cold room is equipped with Äkta chromatography system, sonicator and emulsifier for cell lysis.

Upon request, cold room can be turned into a dark room by equipping it with colour-adjustable lighting.

Cold room equipped with chromatography system and storage space

Dark Room

Light sensitive samples can be prepared and handled in the darkroom, which is equipped with a colour-adjustable lighting, shielded crystal incubator and a stereomicroscope with filtered light.

Wet Lab BSL2

For preparation of samples, organisms of Risk Group 2 can be used and handled in the dedicated safety workbenches in the BSL-2 area. Prior to any work with RG-1 and RG-2 organisms, a special "Form Z" needs to be submitted.

The Wet Lab BSL2 also hosts incubators for mammalian and insect cell culture. Due to restricted access to this area which is not included in the XBI on-site training (XBI Bio S1), an additional training is required (XBI Bio S2).


Required training and offered support

The following trainings are required in order to access and perform work in the XBI: 


Support from the XBI Staff is given Monday to Friday, from 9 am until 6 pm. Access and work in the User Laboratories is allowed also outside these hours.

During beamtime, an On-Call-Duty is organized for nights and weekends for urgent cases. The OCD number for XBI Staff is known to the beamline scientists.

The laboratory offers areas with biological safety level 1 and 2 (BSL1 and BSL2), allowing work organisms belonging to Risk Group 1 or 2, respectively. For access to BSL2 area, additional on-site training XBI Bio S2 is needed. Prior to any work with RG-1 and RG-2 organisms, a special "Form Z" needs to be submitted and approved. Please note that biological samples of Risk Group 3 and higher are not allowed at European XFEL.


For information on the available laboratory equipment and specification, please see the complete list of equipment

The equipment can be booked via EuXFEL Booking System. The login is possible with EuXFEL/UPEX account.

For overview of chemicals kept in stock, please see the latest inventory list. Please contact us well in advance in case of specific chemicals or large amounts are needed for your experiment.