Eye catcher

ELBE as a User Facility

New logo of ELBE

Every year 20 to 30 user groups from all over the world carry out experiments at one of the various radiation sources available at the ELBE - Center for High-Power Radiation Sources. This number is increasing. Already now more than 50% of the total user beamtime is provided to external users. New users are always welcome and every new project further broadens the large variety of research topics investigated at ELBE. 

The center of ELBE is a two-stage superconduction linear accelerator  accelerating electrons from a classical thermionic DC electron-gun or from a superconducting RF Photoinjector to an energy of up to 40 MeV. The average beam current reaches 1 mA, the transverse emittance of the beam is only a few pi mm mrad.

Radiation Sources

User Access

Scientific Results

Radiation Sources

Various kinds of secondary radiation can be generated by the primary electron beam from ELBE.

  • Free-Electron Laser (FELBE)
    In the optical laboratories coherent electromagnetic radiation in the wavelength between 4-250 µm is available from two Free-Electron-Lasers, see FELBE pages for further information.
    In addition, the FEL beam can be directed to the neighbouring High Magnetic Field Laboratory, offering the unique possibility to carry out magneto-optic experiments in pulsed high magnetic fields.

Please note: due to an upgrade of FELBE by the replacement of the present undulator U27 by a new undulator U37 no FELBE beamtime can be offered during the first term of 2017!

  • Bremsstrahlung (γELBE)
    Bremsstrahlung (up to 20 MeV) is available in the nuclear physics cave. Polarized radiation can also be provided.The time structure of the Bremsstrahlung radiation is defined by the electron beam which has to be operated in the micropulse mode. The distance between the pulses can vary between 10 ps and 1000 ns.
  • Electrons
    The direct electron beam from ELBE can be used for detector tests and for irradition.
    Detector tests with an extremly high time resolution are enabled by electron bunches containing only one electron thereby maintaining the time structure of the beam on the ps time-scale.
    For radiobiological experiments the electrons can be extracted on air. A cell-laboratory located close to the radiation physics cave can also be made available to external users.
  • Neutrons (nELBE)
    nELBE is a neutron time-of-flight system with neutron energies between 100 keV and 10 MeV.
  • Positrons (pELBE)
    Materials research with positrons can be performed at EPOS, which consists of three subsystems for mono-energetic positron spectroscopy (MePS), gamma-induced positron spectroscopy (GiPS) and conventional positron spectroscopy using β+ radiation.
  • Superradiant THz source (TELBE)
    This new facility provides low-frequency, high-field THz pulses, in combination with a variety of table-top light sources based on femtosecond lasers. It covers the lower THz range between 0.1 and 3 THz with pulse energies up to 100 µJ. Pulses from TELBE are carrier-envelope-phase stable and can be provided at flexible repetition rates between a few tens of Hz to eventually 13 MHz. The frequency bandwidth can be either 100%, utilizing the diffraction radiator source, or ~20%, utilizing an 8-period undulator.

Time structure of the electron beam from ELBE

The time structure of the electron beam from ELBE is transferred to the secondary radiation. It can be adjusted according to the requests of the user and ranges from cw operation to macropulse mode and to single pulses.


User Access

Application for beamtime

Two calls for proposals for experiments at ELBE are published per year. The next deadline for submission of beamtime applications for the 2nd term of 2017 will be

April 26th, 2017

Proposals are submitted through GATE, the general access tool to the research infrastructures at HZDR.

We strongly recommend discussing the feasibility of planned experiments with the responsible beamline scientist prior to the submission of a proposal, in particular, if you are a new user.

Access is free of charge for all non-proprietary research. Proposals will be evaluated by the Scientific Advisory Committee for the ELBE - Center for High-Power Radiation Sources.

Evaluation Process

The proposals are evaluated by the members of the international and interdisciplinary Scientific Advisory Committee for the ELBE - Center for High-Power Radiation Sources.

Allocation of Beamtime and Reporting

Based on the recommendations of this committee the final decision and allocation of beamtime are made by an internal panel headed by the Scientific Director of HZDR.
Applicants will be informed around mid June 2017.

After finishing the experiments and latest in the beginning of the next term (January or June respectively), a report has to be submitted via GATE. Missing reports for completed experiments exclude the renewed scheduling of beamtime.


Scientific Results

The variety of research at ELBE is demonstrated by the lists of recent publications resulting from experiments at ELBE:



Dr. Barbara Schramm
Head Research Programmes & International Projects
Phone: +49 351 260 - 2684
Fax: +49 351 260 - 12684