European Facilities

Synchrotrons that are part of LEAPS


ALBA is a third generation 3 GeV synchrotron light source facility sited near Barcelona, co-financed by the Spanish Government and the regional Government of Catalonia, and managed by the Consortium for the Construction, Equipment and Exploitation of the Synchrotron Light Laboratory (CELLS). The maximum operational electron current is 250 mA, and the natural horizontal emittance is 4.5 nmrad. Currently, ALBA has 8 beamlines in operation and 3 more under construction.


ASTRID2 is the third-generation low-emittance UV and soft x-ray light source at Aarhus University, Denmark. Commissioned in 2013, the new facility provides state-of-the-art high-brilliance light from the low-emittance electron beam, operating in top-up mode to give an infinite beam lifetime.


The BESSY II synchrotron radiation source at Helmholtz‐Zentrum Berlin (HZB) is a 3rd generation 1.7 GeV a high average brilliance storage ring dedicated to the VUV and soft X‐ray photon energy range. It serves an international user community with more than 3,000 user visits per year. Purpose‐made insertion devices and beamlines allows for energy, spatial, temporal and polarization control of the photon beam of variable repetition rates of up to 500 MHz. BESSY II is a multi‐user facility, used by  a wide scientific community ranging from physics, chemistry, energy research, material science, biology, medical and pharmaceutical research, to cultural heritage investigations. The BESSY VSR upgrade of BESSY II (to be completed in 2020) will add the new capability of user accessible picosecond pulses at high repetition rate. It capitalizes on HZB’s proven scientific and technological expertise in accelerator research and development, as well as its competences in developing, operating and scientifically exploiting instruments for time‐resolved experiments down to the fs time scale.


DAFNE-Light is the INFN- Frascati National Laboratories Synchrotron Radiation Facility. The radiation source DAFNE is a high-luminosity, 0.51 GeV, electron-positron collider. Because of its low energy and high current (higher than 1.5 A), DAΦNE provides very intense synchrotron radiation in the low energy range from IR to soft x-rays and is in operation since 1998.


Diamond is the UK’s synchrotron Light Source, funded jointly by the UK government through STFC, and the Wellcome Trust. Diamond is a 3GeV facility which opened in 2007. Diamond currently hosts 28 beamlines across a wide range of disciplines, with 33 expected to be available by 2020. Diamond welcomes over 3000 users per year to the beamlines, and since operations started, we have also undertaken work with over 100 companies in industry. Recent developments at Diamond include the addition of national centres in electron microscopy in both physical and life science (ePSIC and eBIC), and integrated facilities with expertise in fragment soaking and membrane protein crystallography (X-Chem and MPL).


The third-generation electron storage ring Elettra, operated by the Elettra Laboratory of Sincrotrone Trieste S.C.p.A. since 1993, feeds 28 beamlines. Researchers from more than 50 different countries, selected by an international committee on the basis of the quality of their scientific proposals, access the facility each year.

The funding of the Elettra storage ring project was approved in 1989, the first beam was delivered in October 1993 and the first three beamlines were opened for user operation in the fall of 1994. The storage ring provides photons in the energy range from a few meV to several tens of keV with spectral brightness of up to 1019 photons/s/mm2/mrad2/0.1%bw and it is continuously upgraded in order to be kept competitive.

There were three phases and two main upgrades of the Elettra storage ring. In the first phase from 1993 to 2007 Elettra was operated in a ‘ramping’ mode with LINAC injector providing 1 GeV electrons, further accelerated by ramping the storage ring to the final operational energy of 2 GeV and after 1998 also of 2.4 GeV. The ring was refilled daily. In 2007 the constructed full energy injector and booster started operation injecting electrons at the final energy of 2 GeV or 2.4 GeV (the old injector has been refurbished and used today in the new FERMI FEL facility). Since 2010 Elettra operates in a top-up mode, injecting 1 mA each 6 and 20 min at 2 GeV and 2.4 GeV, respectively. The injection system is perfectly tuned and for the majority of the beamlines does not produce interference with data-acquisition processes. For only few, very sensitive beamlines a gating signal is also provided


The European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF), located in Grenoble - France, is a joint facility supported and shared by 21 European countries. The ESRF operates the most powerful synchrotron radiation source in Europe. Each year several thousand researchers travel to Grenoble where they work in a first-class scientific environment to conduct exciting experiments at the cutting edge of modern science.


The MAX IV Laboratory, through its MAX-lab facility, has been offering synchrotron light to a broad international research community for more than 30 years. In December 2015 the MAX-lab facility was closed and the laboratory has moved to a new site where the MAX IV project is under completion. The MAX IV facility exists out of two low emittance storage rings (1.5 GeV and 3 GeV) and a 3 GeV linac injector which also serves as a source for femto-second X-ray pulses. The novel multi-bend achromat design of the 3 GeV storage ring leads to an emittance below 0.3 nm rad which means that it is the world's brightest storage ring-based light source. The construction and commissioning of these new experimental facilities are well under way and and the first beamlines have become operational during the 2016 with user operation starting in April 2017. At present, 14 beamlines are funded for the MAX IV facility: Eight at the 3 GeV ring, five at the 1.5 GeV ring and one at the short pulse facility (SPF) at the MAX IV linac.


The Metrology Light Source MLS is designed as a dedicated source providing radiation from the THz to the EUV range. The available low energy spectra from the bending magnets as well as from an undulator perfectly complement the spectra available at BESSY II. Moreover, the MLS can be operated in a so-called low-α mode for the generation of coherent synchrotron radiation in the FIR/THz spectral range via short electron bunches. Essential for PTB is the operation of the storage ring as a primary source standard. Therefore a high stability and reproducibility of the storage ring settings is required as well as equipment for the precise determination of the storage ring parameters.

The MLS has a circumference of 48 m and is designed as an asymmetric double-bend achromate with twofold symmetry. The long straight section can accommodate undulators of the BESSY II design which enables PTB to operate an undulator with a period length of 125 mm. The undulator beamline togehter with five bending magnet beamlines covers the spectal range from the THz regime to the EUV range (280 eV maximum usable photon energy). The electron energy can be chosen in the range from 105 MeV to 630 MeV, i. e. the characteristic energy can be tuned in the range from 1.7 eV up to 364 eV in order to adjust the spectral shape to the requirements of the calibration task. The electron beam current can be adjusted in a range of more than 11 orders of magnitude, i. e. from a single electron (1 pA) up to 200 mA, in order to comply with the dynamic range of a device to be calibrated.


PETRA III, which took up operation in 2009, is the most brilliant storage-ring-based X-radiation source in the world for high energy photons. It offers outstanding experimental opportunities for scientists who want to investigate very small samples or require tightly collimated and very short-wavelength X-rays for their experiments.


The Swiss Light Source (SLS) at the Paul Scherrer Institut is a third-generation synchrotron light source. In the design of SLS a high priority was given to the items quality (high brightness), flexibility (wide wavelength spectrum) and stability (very stable temperature conditions) for the primary electron beam and the secondary photon beams.


SOLARIS is a brand new “fourth generation” synchrotron radiation source located in Kraków, Poland. It is the first research infrastructure of this type in Central and Eastern Europe. SOLARIS storage ring is a replica of the 1.5 GeV storage ring built at MAX IV Laboratory in Lund, Sweden. The novel multi-bend achromat design allows to obtain in Kraków and Lund a unique low emittance (6nm rad) in a circumference of only 96 m. The National Synchrotron Radiation Center functions under the auspices of Jagiellonian University. The investment was co-financed by the European Union with funds from the European Regional Development Fund.


SOLEIL is the French national 2,75 GeV third generation synchrotron installation. CNRS and the CEA created the public company SOLEIL Synchrotron, called to lead the construction and then the operation of SOLEIL. Alongside them, the Region Ile de France and the Conseil General de l’Essonne have ensured nearly 80% of capital costs. The Region Centre is also a SOLEIL partner.