Topping-out ceremony for CFEL

Close collaboration (from left): Prof. Dr.-Ing. H. Siegfried Stiehl (University of Hamburg), Prof. Dr. Helmut Dosch (DESY), Hamburg’s Science Senator Dr. Herlind Gundelach, Prof. Dr. Martin Stratmann (MPG), Prof. Dr. Joachim H. Ullrich (CFEL).
Foto: UHH, RRZ/MCC, Arvid Mentz

Vis-à-vis the PETRA III experimental hall, a very special new building celebrated its topping-out ceremony: the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science (CFEL) – a centre of excellence for photon science at next generation light sources that is unique in Europe. Even if the construction of the “real” roof structure was delayed by the hard winter, CFEL already boasts an excellently developed “scientific roof structure”, as Hamburg’s State Minister of Science and Research Dr. Herlind Gundelach underlined in her address. By winning the world’s best scientists for its working groups, CFEL already turned into a scientific success story, the State Minister said.

CFEL is a novel cooperation between DESY, the Max Planck Society (MPG) and the University of Hamburg aimed at further intensifying the collaboration between universities and non-university institutions. Across all borders of scientific disciplines and institutions, the CFEL members strive to fathom the full potential of the new free-electron lasers. Thanks to their temporal resolution of a few femtoseconds (quadrillionths of a second) and their extreme intensities (one million times higher than before), these new light sources enable scientists to observe and analyse dynamical processes and structural changes of atoms, molecules, solids, plasmas or biological systems in real time.
CFEL sets new standards in particular for research in the field of bio- and nanomaterials and dramatically pushes back the frontiers of our knowledge, emphasized DESY Director Prof. Helmut Dosch.

Despite the glaring sunshine on the construction site, the further addresses echoed above all the great enthusiasm of the research partners involved in the centre. The visionary appearance of the futuristic, transparent building is to be the symbol of the connected and interdisciplinary work pursued at CFEL, which will enable excellent and innovative science at the highest level.

The costs for the construction of the new science building amount to almost 49 million Euro, the main part of which will be borne by the City of Hamburg. Due to the outstanding scientific concept of CFEL, the German federal government will contribute around 14 million Euro.

Further information: CFEL