What is ELI?

The Extreme Light Infrastructure is the world's largest and most advanced high-power laser infrastructure and a global technology and innovation leader in high-power, high-intensity, and short-pulsed laser systems.

The international laser user facility ELI accommodates some of the most intense lasers in the world. ELI’s lasers produce ultra-short pulses of high energy photons, electrons, protons, neutrons, muons and neutrinos in the (sub-)attosecond regimes on demand.

ELI is the first ESFRI Landmark constructed in the Central Eastern European Member States. With an investment exceeding 850 million euros from the European Regional Development Funds, three world-class high-power, high-repetition-rate laser facilities have been established in Czech Republic (ELI Beamlines), Hungary (ELI-ALPS) and Romania (ELI-NP).

In terms of research, ELI’s lasers enable a broad range of discovery possibilities from the most theoretical and exotic disciplines to very practical material and engineering problems. Techniques being deployed at ELI decrease the pulse duration to the attosecond-zeptosecond time scale. In this way, exawatt power can be reached with a simple joule of energy. As the technology develops and spreads, it becomes one of the more cost-effective means to conduct ‘big science’ in physics, biology and materials science.

The commissioning of the facilities is foreseen to be completed in 2022-2023, and advanced, specific experimental capabilities have already come online since 2019. The special vibration-free buildings that host the lasers and the experiments have been commissioned. Installation of lasers, secondary sources and the experimental equipment is nearly completed.  On 30 April 2021, the ELI European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ELI ERIC) was established to jointly manage the operations of the ELI facilities (initially ELI-ALPS and ELI Beamlines) for the benefit of international academic and industrial researchers.

What is an ERIC?

The European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) is a legal framework created by the European Commission to allow the operation of Research Infrastructures of Pan-European interest. For more information, please visit this guide:


Extreme Light Infrastructure

A European ESFRI project for the investigation of light-matter interactions at highest intensities and shortest time scales.

ELI Publications Photo Gallery



  • ELI-Beamlines Facility

    In Dolni Brezany, near Prague, Czech Republic, the ELI-Beamlines facility mainly will focus on the development of short-pulse secondary sources of radiation and particles, and on their multidisciplinary applications in molecular, biomedical and material sciences, physics of dense plasmas, warm dense matter, laboratory astrophysics. In addition, the pillar will uitilze its high-power, high-repetition-rate lasers for high-field physics experiments with focused intensities of about 1023 W/cm2, investigating exotic plasma physics, and non-linear QED effects. www.eli-beams.eu

  • ELI-Nuclear Physics Facility

    In Magurele, Romania, the ELI Nuclear Physics (ELI-NP) facility focuses on laser-based nuclear physics. It will host two machines, a very high intensity laser, where beams from two 10 PW lasers are coherently added to get intensities of the order of 1023 - 1024 W/cm2, and a very intense, brilliant gamma beam, which is obtained by incoherent Compton back scattering of a laser light off a brilliant electron beam from a conventional linear accelerator. Applications include nuclear physics experiments to characterize laser – target interaction, photonuclear reactions, and exotic nuclear physics and astrophysics. http://www.eli-np.ro

  • ELI-Attosecond Facility

    The ELI Attosecond Light Pulse Source (ELI-ALPS) in Szeged, Hungary is establishing a unique facility, which provides light sources between THz (1012 Hz) and x-ray (1018 - 1019 Hz) frequency range in the form of ultrashort pulses with high repetition rate. ELI-ALPS will be dedicated to extremely fast dynamics by taking snap-shots in the attosecond scale (a billionth of a billionth of second) of the electron dynamics in atoms, molecules, plasmas and solids. It will also pursue research with ultrahigh intensity lasers. http://www.eli-alps.hu