Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT

News at a Glance


Einstein Telescope launches new era in astronomy

It’s still just a plan, but a new telescope could soon be measuring gravitational waves. Gravitational waves are something like the sound waves of the universe. They are created, for example, when black holes or neutron stars collide. The future gravitational wave detector, the Einstein Telescope, will use the latest laser technology to better understand these waves and, thus, our universe. One possible location for the construction of this telescope is the border triangle of Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands.
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Laser immersion probe for smart inline monitoring of water and wastewater

A new type of laser-based immersion probe, which the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen is testing as part of BMBF- and EU-funded projects with industrial partners and users, could pave the way for continuous inline monitoring of water treatment processes in wastewater treatment plants. The 2D fluorescence measurement method generates spectroscopic data directly on site in the clarifier. In conjunction with intelligent evaluation software, this process is the key to energy- and resource-efficient water treatment. It will be presented to the public for the first time at IFAT 2024, the world’s leading trade fair for water, sewage, waste and raw materials management in Munich.
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Harnessing Machine Learning for Breakthroughs with High-Power Lasers

A team of international scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT, and the Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI) collaborated on an experiment to optimise high-intensity high-repetition rate laser technology using machine learning. The experiment represents a significant leap forward in the study, understanding, and practical application of high-intensity lasers.
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"Huge, completely untapped markets for photonics"

The AKL - International Laser Technology Congress 2024 fully confirmed its reputation as the leading forum for the European laser industry: There were 525 participants and 81 speakers from 21 countries, a fully booked exhibition accompanying the conference and 60 "Laser Technology Live" demonstrations in the laboratories of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT and RWTH Aachen University. The congress focused on innovations for established laser applications as well as potential billion-euro markets of the future – including cyberphotonics, quantum technologies and laser-ignited inertial fusion energy (IFE). Once again, the Gerd Herziger Session was a highlight.
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Technology Focus



In this field of research, we develop innovative laser beam sources with tailored spatial, temporal and spectral properties as well as output powers.


Optical Systems

The focus of this research field includes beam shaping and beam guiding, frequency conversion as well as design, layout and packaging of optical components.


Quantum Technology

Together with international experts we are developing, among other things, photon sources, photonic components & systems for future applications in the field of quantum technology.


Laser Measurement Technology

Together with customers from industry and research, we develop laser processes for production measurement technology, material and bioanalytics as well as testing technology, among others.


Additive Manufacturing

Since the mid-1990s, Fraunhofer ILT has been advancing Additive Manufacturing – especially of metallic components – with Laser Powder Bed Fusion (LPBF) and Laser Material Deposition (LMD), among others. 


Surface Technology

Laser-based technologies for the efficient processing, functionalization and finishing of surfaces are among the key topics in this field of research. 



Our scientists develop laser beam sources and laser-based joining processes for numerous applications in micro and macro technology.



We offer laser-based solutions for new or technically and economically optimized processes in cutting or ablation technology and accompany customers from the initial feasibility study to industrial implementation. 



In this technology field, we concentrate our digital competencies in laser technology and contribute to your progress in R&D and production in the age of RAMI and Industry 4.0.


EUV and Plasma Technology

In addition to application-adapted plasma-based beam sources, our experts develop optical systems for the efficient use of EUV radiation in industry and research, among others.


Medical Technology

In close cooperation with partners from life sciences, we research and develop laser-based processes for diagnostic and therapeutic applications, among others.


Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT

Steinbachstr. 15
52074 Aachen, Germany

Telephone +49 241 8906-0
Fax +49 241 8906-121



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Together with German and foreign companies and research centers, Fraunhofer ILT develops a broad portfolio of solutions for innovations in industry and research.