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Our history

1910, suspension tests

1910: suspension tests
in the CNAM automobile workshop

1901 - 1977
    ...LNE gradually widens its scope

The Laboratoire National d'Essais was established in 1901 as part of the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers (CNAM). It was set up to meet industrial testing and measurement requirements, especially in the fields of materials, machinery and physics.

LNE began focusing on consumer product safety in 1930, and in 1976 set up a consumer products department.

1978 - 2000
    ...a state-owned enterprise

In 1978 LNE changed its legal status. Under a new law on consumer protection and information, LNE became a state-owned enterprise attached to the French Ministry of Industry. Its spheres of activity were widened and its mission was expanded to include product certification.

Several key events contributed to the Laboratory's development during this period:
- In 1979 LNE took over the national packaging centre CETEC and optical research centre CECEP.
- Also in 1979, LNE became a founder member of the medical equipment test laboratory group GLEM.
- In 1985 LNE took over the plastic materials research centre CEMP.

To keep pace with this expansion of its activities, in 1985 LNE set up a new centre in the Trappes-Elancourt enterprise zone outside Paris, where it now occupies 45,000 sq m of laboratory space spread over 8.5 hectares.

LNE also expanded into the French provinces during this period, opening regional centres in Douai, Nîmes and Poitiers and a G-MED office in Saint-Etienne. A further regional centre was opened in Toulouse in 2003.

2005: development of quantum resistance standards

2005: development
of quantum resistance

2001 to today international dimension

In 2001 LNE launched its international operations by setting up LNE-Asia. Based in Hong Kong, LNE-Asia is a joint venture between LNE and CMA Testing and Certification Laboratories (51% owned by LNE). In 2005 LNE opened an office in Shanghai.

In 2003 the Laboratory consolidated two of its main activities. In the certification field it took over the electromedical device certification activity performed by G-MED/LCIE, and in the metrology field it acquired LCIE's electrical metrology calibration centre.

In 2004 LNE opened a centre for R&D in electrical metrology and nanometrology at its Trappes site. The new building provides 3,400 sq m of laboratory space.

2005 saw two significant developments. Firstly, LNE reinforced its international activity by opening a G-MED subsidiary in the United States. Secondly, the French government entrusted LNE with overall responsibility for French metrology. Renamed the Laboratoire national de métrologie et d'essais, LNE has taken over the role of the Bureau National de Métrologie and now coordinates the work of France's other three national metrology laboratories (CNAM, CEA and Observatoire de Paris).

In 2008 LNE confirmed its international positioning by setting up LNE China in Shanghai, equipped with its own laboratories and testing resources.

In 2009 LNE strengthened its presence in the energy sector in France by creating

  • - BELENOS a research and test centre for solar heating systems in Nîmes (in partnership with CETIAT).

And in 2010 it opened:

  • - CERTISOLIS SAS a test and certification centre for photovoltaic solar panels on the INES site near Chambéry (in partnership with CSTB).

On the international front, LNE purchased the shares in LNE Asia held by its local partner CMA Testing and Certification Laboratories.


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