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Swiss Free Electron Laser

As the next large-scale facility at the Paul Scherrer Institute, the SwissFEL is scheduled to come on-line in 2016. It will produce very short pulses of X-ray light, with laser-like properties. Researchers will be able to use these pulses to visualize extremely fast processes, such as how new molecules are created in a chemical reaction; to determine the detailed structure of vital proteins; or to determine the relationship between electronic and atomic structure in materials. From such studies, researchers will gain insights which are not possible to obtain with the methods available today. This new knowledge will expand our understanding of nature and lead to many practical applications; for instance, new pharmaceuticals, more efficient processes in the chemical industry, new materials for electronics, or alternative processes in energy production.