Welcome to the HZB User Facility BESSY II

The Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB) operates the large scale research facility BESSY II, a third generation synchrotron source on Wilhelm-Conrad-Röntgen-Campus in Berlin-Adlershof. BESSY II provides ultrabright photon beams from the long wavelength Terahertz region to hard X-rays with complete control of the polarization of the radiation and energy range. The combination of brightness and time resolution makes BESSY II the ultimate microscope for time and space, since both femtosecond time and picometer spatial resolutions are available. In addition, HZB is home to a number of state-of-the-art on-site laboratories and CoreLabs. All these research facilities are designed to serve researchers from universities, foreign research institutions and industry.


By beginning of March 2020 we were forced to impose some restrictions to slow down the spread of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Today we are very pleased to announce that we can gradually reduce these restrictions and resume user operation at our facility step by step.

Please notice the Corona-Special-Schedule

More detailed information can be found below.


  • On the 9th of June we returned to user operation for local and regional users
  • Depending on actual regulations and developments we will also welcome external users from abroad as of June 22nd
  • Since we have to ensure, that sufficient distance is possible and practicable in the BESSY II experimental hall, a “thinned out timetable” is in place. Only selected beamlines are accessible at a time
  • Unfortunately, we cannot yet welcome our users from outside the Europe Union or from highly affected areas within the EU. Mixed teams from different countries or areas are also kindly asked to postpone their beamtimes
  • Please refer to the Corona-Special-Schedule for more details (schedule update regularly). If the beamline has a “white slot”, stay away from the experiment


The following rules apply for access to the experimental hall of BESSY II: 

  • only 2 persons are allowed at the beamline at any time
  • wearing mouth and nose protection is mandatory in the experimental hall and HZB
  • guarantee the required minimum distance of 2 meters to other people at all times
  • if it is inevitable to work at shorter distance for a short time, use FFP2 masks, face shields and gloves
  • disinfect tables, keyboards etc. regularly
  • if there is no appropriate protection, please postpone the work

Operation and experiments at BESSY II strongly rely on your sense of responsibility.


All 2020/I proposals that have been postponed due to COVID-19 will be re-scheduled between October 2020 and February 2021.

The beamtime applications from the last Call (round 2020/II) have now been reviewed and evaluated and we will provide you with the results in the next couple of weeks. Successful proposals from round 2020/II will be scheduled in the period between February 2021 and July 2021.
The huge number of waiting proposals - both postponed and new - lead to the decision to skip the next call for proposals.
However, we are preparing a workflow for highly urgent request for the semester 2021/I.


At several beamlines, we plan to offer mail-in services and remote access (service measurements). You will find more detailed information on this webpage soon. We kindly ask you to consider this alternative as well as the possibility of “semi-remote-access”, where you join the beamtime via video. In any case, please, discuss the options and feasibility with our instrument scientists first.

Financial expenses for sample shipment will be reimbursed by HZB.

Not all beamlines and definitely not all experiments are suitable for a service measurement. If you are interested in this option, please proceed as follows:

  1. Discuss the possibility of mail-in service and remote access with the respective beamline scientist. The decision if a remote access measurement is possible lies with the beamline scientist.
  2. If remote-access is possible for your experiment, the beamline scientist will inform the HZB User Coordination; your scheduled beamtime will be marked as ‘remote access’ in GATE.
  3. Provide the safety declaration and declaration of chemicals via GATE.
  4. Provide the beamline scientist with all the necessary and relevant information concerning your samples and the planned experiments via email
  5. Send in your samples using DHL or TNT, following the shipping instructions.
  6. Please make sure to inform the HZB colleague on all safety measures that have to be taken with your samples.

You will receive the shipping instructions as soon as the HZB User Coordination has bee informed by the beamline scientist that there is an agreement on ‘remote access’ for your beamtime.


In light of the rapidly changing situation world-wide resulting from the SARS-CoV-2 virus BESSY II would like to ensure that it is doing everything possible to support researchers in their efforts to discover more about the virus and bring us closer to an effective vaccine or treatment. We are offering priority fast track access for groups who require instrument time for projects directly related to SARS-CoV-2. In order to submit a proposal for SARS-CoV-2 related research please contact us by email. More detailed information about our service at BESSY II can be found here.


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