European Synchrotron Radiation Facility
The ESRF is an X-ray light source for Europe. It is located in Grenoble, France, and supported and shared by 20 countries.
The European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) is 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.
A synchrotron is a stadium-sized machine that produces many beams of bright X-ray light. Each beam is guided through a set of lenses and instruments called a beamline, where the X-rays illuminate and interact with samples of material being studied. Many countries operate synchrotrons—there are 10 in Europe—but only four worldwide are similar in design and power to the ESRF.
At more than 40 specialised experimental stations on our beamlines, physicists work side by side with chemists and materials scientists. Biologists, medical doctors, meteorologists, geophysicists and archaeologists have become regular users. Companies also send researchers, notably in the fields of pharmaceuticals, consumer products, petrochemicals and microelectronics.
Synchrotron X-ray scanning has solved the mystery surrounding the 125 million-year-old tiny fossil eggs discovered in Thailand in 2003. A first analysis of the eggshells concluded that they belonged to a small theropod dinosaur, or possibly a primitive bird
The ESRF officially launched Phase II of its innovative renovation project, the Upgrade Programme. The highlight and major technological challenge of this second step is the creation of an ultra-bright synchrotron source with performances 100 times superior to present day synchrotrons worldwide.
Official Launch of Phase II of the Upgrade Programme
Writing that has lain undiscovered for centuries inside a scroll that was charred in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD has been uncovered for the first time.
The ESRF Council has expressed unanimous support for the implementation of the second phase of the ESRF Upgrade Programme and approved the related Technical Design Report.