Start of construction of the new European XFEL research facility on 8 January 2009 (Dec. 2008)

Architectural example of the central building on the XFEL research site.

Architectural example of the central building on the XFEL research site: The tunnels from which the laserlike X-ray flashes are led to the experimental stations will end in the underground hall beneath the main building. (DESY/XFEL)

On December 12, 2008 all the partners involved met at DESY to sign the building contracts for the underground complex of the European XFEL facility. The contracts for the three lots that were called for tender were awarded to two consortia of renowned building contractors. The contractors intend to start setting up the construction sites shortly. Construction will officially begin on 8 January 2009.

The realization of the underground buildings (tunnels, shafts, halls) of the 3.4-kilometre-long European XFEL facility is subdivided into three sections: Lot 1 refers to the construction site “Schenefeld” and comprises amongst others the construction of the 14-metre-deep experiment hall and the boring of most of the tunnels of the “fan”. Lot 2 was called for tender for the site “Osdorfer Born”, and includes the realization of the 2.1-kilometre-long tunnel for the linear accelerator. Both contracts, which amount to a total of nearly 206 million Euro, were awarded to the consortium Hochtief/Bilfinger Berger. The works specified for Lot 3 will take place on the construction site “DESY-Bahrenfeld”. They cover the large injector complex including the shaft leading from the modulator hall into the tunnel. Lot 3 also comprises the building of the test hall for the superconducting accelerator modules (AMTF hall) that is to be erected on the DESY site. This contract, which amounts to 36 million Euro, goes to the consortium Züblin/Aug. Prien. DESY is the awarding authority, representing the future not-for-profit company European XFEL Gmbh which is to be founded in spring 2009.