CERN Accelerating science


Institut Max Laue - Paul Langevin



The Institut Laue-Langevin is an international research centre at the leading edge of neutron science and technology.

Founded on 19 January 1967 with the signing of an agreement between the governments of the French Republic and the Federal Republic of Germany, in 2017, ILL marked its 50th anniversary.

The institute is funded and managed by France, Germany and the United Kingdom, that officially became its third Associate member country in 1974. Each of the founding countries contributes about 25 % to the annual budget. The remaining funding is provided by the 10 Scientific Members (Spain, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, the Czech Republic, Sweden, Belgium, Slovakia, Denmark and Poland). Thus, ILL  caters to more than 90 % of the European neutron scattering community.

ILL is the most intense neutron source in the world, at the service of international scientists, to carry out scientific research at the frontiers of modern science.  It has the innovative status of a service provider, offering the scientific community the world's leading facilities in neutron science and technology - a large cold neutron source and ten neutron guides, each capable of serving three or four instruments with a very high intensity neutron flux.

As a service provider, ILL makes its facilities and expertise available to visiting scientists. Every year, about 1400 researchers from over 40 countries visit it. More than 800 experiments selected by a scientific review committee are performed annually.

Research focuses primarily on fundamental science in a variety of fields: condensed matter physics, chemistry, biology, nuclear physics and materials science, etc. It results in 650 publications per year. Furthermore, 30% of the research at ILL is directly linked to industrial applications such as neutron radiography and tomography, lithium battery for automobiles, etc., and meets major societal challenges in environment and energy; health, food and chemistry; materials, components and process engineering.

The Institute is an exceptional centre of excellence, a fine example of successful co-operation in Europe and a prototype for the European Research Area.