ESRF-EBS confirmed as landmark in ESFRI roadmap


On 11 September 2018, in Vienna, the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) presented the ESFRI Roadmap 2018 on Large Scale Research Infrastructures. The ESRF-Extremely Brilliant Source (ESRF-EBS) is confirmed as a major landmark project. ESRF-EBS is a 150-million euro facility upgrade, over the period 2015-2022. With the construction of a brand-new storage ring, ESRF-EBS will be the world’s first high-energy fourth-generation synchrotron light source.

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This year, the ESRF celebrates its 30th anniversary: 30 years of scientific discoveries, 30 years of innovation. In 1988, the ESRF made history as the world’s first third-generation synchrotron light source, producing X-rays 100 billion times brighter than the X-rays used in hospitals and providing unrivalled opportunities for scientists in the exploration of materials and living matter. For 30 years, the ESRF has aligned success after success, breaking records for its scientific output with over 30 000 publications and four Nobel prize laureates, as well as for the brilliance and stability of its X-ray beams. Today, the ESRF continues to lead the way with the Extremely Brilliant Source, a 150M€ project, funded by the 22 partner countries of the ESRF.

With EBS, the ESRF is building an ambitious new standard for synchrotron storage rings – the world’s first high-energy fourth-generation storage ring – with unique X-ray performances increased by a factor 100 compared to the current storage ring. As explained by Francesco Sette, Director General of the ESRF, “Opening new possibilities for synchrotron science is at the heart of the ESRF’s mission. The new storage ring, together with the most advanced portfolio of new beamlines, will enable scientists to bring X-ray science into research domains and applications that could not have been imagined a few years ago. I'm very pleased that this innovative project is confirmed as a landmark in the ESFRI Roadmap 2018.”


The new storage ring, together with the most advanced portfolio of beamlines in world, will enable scientists to bring X-ray science into new research domains and applications, including the development of the next generation of drugs, biomaterials and sustainable materials. It will provide deep insights into the complex mechanisms governing living organisms and will help to elucidate our recent and ancient past, as manifested in historical artefacts and fossils. Furthermore, ESRF-EBS will provide unique opportunities for applied and innovation-driven research. Covering a multitude of scientific techniques, the new EBS beamlines will make it possible to study the structure of matter at the atomic level in greater detail, much faster and with higher quality resolution.The construction of ESRF-EBS is in full swing. The new source will be achieved by replacing the existing storage ring, a double-bend achromat (DBA) magnet sequence, with an innovative and award-winning hybrid multi-bend achromat (HMBA) design, developed at the ESRF. From 10 December 2018 onwards, the ESRF will pause its user programme for 20 months in order to dismantle the current storage ring and install the new lattice. This will be followed by the construction of four brand new beamlines, the development of an ambitious instrumentation programme and a “big data” strategy to exploit the enhanced performances of the new source.

The implementation of this major project is based on the unique expertise of the ESRF, on its international governance, but also on the synergy with European laboratories and synchrotrons to develop open innovation, and to enhance the competitiveness of European industry through open science.

Today, more than ten projects in progress worldwide are based on the ESRF-EBS model, which will serve as a reference for at least another decade. With ESRF-EBS, the ESRF, and Europe, is reinforcing its pioneering role and is building a new generation of synchrotrons, the first high-energy fourth generation synchrotron.


Top image: ESRF-EBS girder assembly line at the ESRF in June 2018. ©ESRF/S. Cande