Photo: J.-M. Schulter / dresden-luftfoto.de


Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf

The Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) is a multi-disciplinary national research center located in Dresden,Germany. It is home of approximately 1,100 members of staff, who work on research projects in the sectors energy, health, and matter.


HZDR Contribution to EUCALL

HZDR operates one of the most intense high-power laser systems in Europe, the 0.75 PW DRACO Ti:Sa laser system that provides high-intensity infrared laser pulses of 10^21 W/cm² of 30 fs pulse duration at Hz repetition rate. Due to a recent upgrade project, DRACO is supposed to deliver 1 PW laser pulses from summer 2016 on. With these pulses, ultrashort plasma physics at relativistic laser intensities can be studied. One of the prominent areas of expertise is the acceleration of intense ion beams with DRACO laser pulses in the interaction of the laser with complex, solid density targets. For future applications such as radiation therapy of tumors with laser-accelerated ion beams, HZDR has developed reliable techniques for fast and accurate target positioning on the micron level.

Close to the high-power laser system HZDR houses TELBE, a high-field high-repetition-rate Terahertz facility which is equipped with both a THz undulator and a diffraction radiator. Driven by the electron bunches of down to 150 fs duration and up to 1 nC bunch charge delivered by the linear accelerator ELBE, TELBE can generate intense, ultra-short pulses of THz radiation. At TELBE, new methods for electron bunch arrival measurement and characterization of ultrashort electron bunches on femtosecond time scales have been developed.

HZDR has world-class expertise in developing parallel methods for large-scale, high rate data analysis and realistic simulations of laser interaction with matter. Both physicists and computer scientists work on developing tools and algorithms as well as full scale simulation codes on modern many-core hardware which are provided to scientists all over the world as open source. HZDR houses a dedicated high performance computer, HYPNOS, with over 8,000 CPU cores and over a hundred GPU processing cards that are used for both simulations and large-scale data analysis.

The HZDR contributes to all four scientific work packages in EUCALL: SIMEX (WP4), UFDAC (WP5), HIREP (WP6) and PUCCA (WP7).

In SIMEX, HZDR will provide highly parallel, in-situ simulations of transient processes in high-power laser interaction with solid density targets to study non-equilibrium plasma physics on the femtosecond and nanometer scale. For this, scattering and photon transport of XFEL photons will be included in the SIMEX platform.

Moreoever, scalable computing and data analysis techniques on modern computer hardware such as GPUs will be provided by HZDR scientists to speed up both simulations and large-scale image and signal data analysis in a scalable way. These techniques will be developed in both the UFDAC and SIMEX work packages.

For HIREP, HZDR will be working together with the other partners on high-rate, high-accuracy target positioning for experiments at high-power lasers and XFELs. In PUCCA, HZDR will help to deliver beam-arrival monitors for electron pulses with femtosecond resolution based on optical measurement techniques.


Overview over HZDR Large-Scale Facilities

As a member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres, HZDR operates several large-scale facilities that are also available to external users from around the world.


ELBE Center for High-Power Radiation Sources

The Radiation Source ELBE (Electron Linear accelerator with high Brilliance and low Emittance) is based on a superconducting accelerator that can be operated in high average-power mode (quasi continuous wave mode, CW). Electrons are pre-accelerated in a 250 keV-thermionic DC electron gun and are pre-bunched in a two-stage RF-buncher section. The main accelerator consists of two 20 MeV superconducting linear accelerator modules operating at 1.3 GHz.


Experiments at ELBE can use the primary electron beam as well as many secondary particle and radiation beams:

  • infrared photons at the Free-Electron Laser Facility FELBE
  • gamma rays at the Bremsstrahlung Facility ɤELBE
  • neutrons at the Neutron Time-of-Flight Facility nELBE
  • positrons at the Mono-Energetic Positron Source pELBE
  • narrow and broadband Terahertz Source TELBE, currently being commissioned


Dresden High Magnetic Field Laboratory (HLD)

Magnetic fields allow for the systematic manipulation and control of material properties – which is why these kinds of experiments are conducted on new materials so that their fundamental properties can be explored and so that they can be optimized for future application. In particular, electronic properties of metallic, semiconducting, superconducting, and magnetic materials are investigated.

Every year, the HLD welcomes dozens of user groups from all around the globe. The HLD has accepted proposals for magnet time and hosted users since the beginning of 2007. The coils available at the HLD produce both high magnetic fields (above 70 T with 150 ms pulse length) and smaller ones (60 – 65 T, with 25 – 50 ms pulse lengths). Pulsed magnets up to 100 T with 10 ms pulse length are under design. The HLD coordinates its user program and research with European partners within the context of the EMFL (European Magnetic Field Laboratory).

In 2012, a record field close to 94,2 T has been reached. Proposals for experiments up to 85 T are now accepted. Energy for this is provided by a modular 50 MJ capacitor bank — the only of its kind in the world. The free-electron laser facility FELBE next door allows high-brilliance infrared radiation to be fed into the pulsed field cells of the HLD, thus enabling unique high-field magneto-optical experiments in the 4 to 250 µm range.


Ion Beam Center (IBC)

The Ion Beam Center of the HZDR is devoted to the application of ion beams to modify and analyze near-surface layers of materials. As Europe’s largest ion beam center, it operates several electrostatic accelerators, ion implanters, fine-focused ion-beam devices, highly-charged ion devices, and experimental installations for plasma immersion ion implantation as well as ion-assisted deposition of thin films. This broad spectrum of ion-beam equipment is available in the energy range from several eV up to several ten MeV.

In addition to ion beam analysis, for a comprehensive characterization of materials electron microscopy (TEM, SEM, cross-beam systems), and X-ray-based analysis techniques are used for structural elucidation. The IBC has been demonstrating expert-level knowledge and a deep understanding of practical applications for many years. A broad spectrum of research topics in microelectronics, electro-optics, semiconductor research, magnetism, nanotechnology, and mineralogy are covered here.


Rossendorf Beamline (ROBL) at the ESRF in Grenoble (France)

Dedicated to Molecular Actinoid Science, ROBL's two experimental stations offer a variety of X-ray spectroscopic and diffraction tools for studies in the context of fundamental actinoid science, nuclear waste management, and (mostly mining-related) environmental chemistry. ROBL is operated by the HZDR.

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