The DESY research centre (short for Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron) is one of the world's leading facilities for particle acceleration. It is part of the Helmholtz Association, Germany's largest scientific organisation.
DESY in Hamburg-Bahrenfeld (and a smaller site in Zeuthen, Brandenburg), develops, builds and operates particle accelerators to further research the structure of matter. 2,150 staff members work in a broad scientific spectrum. The accelerators PETRA III and FLASH which are operated by DESY, are the world's most brilliant synchrotron radiation source and the world's first free-electron laser for soft X-rays. Next to developing new particle acceleration techniques and X-ray free-electron lasers, scientists at DESY concentrate on research with photons (at synchrotron radiation sources and X-ray lasers for physics, chemistry, biology, geology and health care), particle and astro particle physics.
Internationality is a keyword at the DESY research centre. Every year, around 3000 visiting scientists from more than 40 countries are attracted to do research at DESY's unique facilities and to exchange views in Hamburg. Furthermore, ever since its establishment in 1959, DESY has been in great demand for various international projects. The research centre’s HERA accelerator for example was among the first internationally financed large-scale projects. It paved the way for a new concept of scientific cooperation across borders. In effect, DESY today actively contributes to international cooperations like at the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, the IceCube neutrino telescope located at the South Pole, and is main shareholder of the European XFEL.