Bi-national Research Institute for Defence Technologies and Security

The French-German Research Institute of Saint-Louis is a bi-national institute operated jointly by the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic on the basis of a Convention signed in the year 1958.

The objectives of ISL are defined by the Ministries of both supporting nations: the DGA (General Directorate for Armament) by order of the French Ministry of Defence and the BAAINBw (Federal Office of Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support) by order of the German Federal Ministry of Defence.

The ISL in Saint-Louis

Interdisciplinary research for the development of future equipment for the armed force

The mission of ISL is to develop technical innovations in the fields of defence and security. Research is carried out in various specialist fields and at differing technology readiness levels (TRL), from  basic research to the development of preindustrial prototypes that can be integrated in operative equipment (TRL from 1 to 6).

The activities of the Institute focus on two areas:

  • Controlling the effects of projected energy, increasing its precision
  • Improving the protection of military and security operational staff at the best cost-performance ratio

Applications in the military and civil sectors

Numerous ISL research projects have dual-use applications. They can be implemented  not only in the defence sector, in internal security and in external deployment such as counter-terrorist operations, but also in the aeronautic, automobile, health and textile industry sectors.

In the field of defence technology our activities focus on the armament programmes of DGA and BAIINBw. The results of ISL research are held in high regard not only in Europe through the European Defence Agency (EDA), but also gain high international acclaim.

In the security sector our activities cover the joint requirements of Germany and France through national research programmes (ANR, BMBF, ...), or inter-ministerial research programmes in both countries (FUI, ...).  These research operations are also based on requirements within the EU, in particular through the research programmes of the European Commission (H2020).

Applications in a wide range of sectors, such as transport, health or the textile industry, are addressed by ISL  in particular in the framework of the INSTITUT CARNOT MICA (Materials Institute Carnot Alsace), of which ISL has been a member since this institute was founded.