Loans, reservations and document delivery (ILL)

Borrow documents on site

Reserve documents

Order documents (ILL)

Library fees


To borrow, reserve, and order documents, you need to be registered in one of the NEBIS network libraries. EPFL Library is part of the NEBIS network.

Borrowing documents on site and ordering books from the NEBIS network is free of charge. A library card is required for all loans. Each person is responsible for the documents borrowed with his or her card (see the Library rules).

The BEAST catalogue allows you to find out the availability of the documents from our printed and electronic collections, or within the NEBIS network.

PhD students and EPFL staff can request on demand digitized articles.


■   Borrow documents on site

If the document you need is available on site, do not reserve it, but pick it up directly from the shelves and borrow it at self check machines or at the Library desk. Almost all of our printed collection is accessible 7/7 from 7A.M. to midnight.

You can borrow up to 100 items simultaneously.


■   Reserve documents

If the document is available in the NEBIS network, or unavaiable at EPFL Library, you can make a reservation on the document from the BEAST catalogue. Connect to your account and use the “Reservation” feature.

To receive your document free of charge at the library counter, select “EPF-BIB (Lausanne)” as the collection location. Documents can be delivered to all libraries in the NEBIS network. Postal delivery directly to your home is possible but is charged. Please consult the Library fees.

As soon as the document is available, you will receive an email. You can then pick up the document at the Library desk between 8A.M. and 8P.M., Monday to Friday. The document is reserved for 10 days. After this period, and without any news from you, the reservation is expired. It is possible to reserve 30 documents simultaneously.

Most of the time, it is faster to order a copy available in another library (delays of 3 to 5 days) than to wait for the borrowed document to be returned.


■   Order documents (ILL)

Any reader registered in the NEBIS network can make an interlibrary loan request. Consult the Library fees.

  • Books on loan
  • Copies of articles (digital or printed version)
  • All types of document available in libraries (reports, proceedings of conferences, theses…)
  • Documents from Swiss libraries: 3 to 5 days
  • Documents from European libraries (outside Switzerland): 1 to 2 weeks

Documents can be collected at EPFL Library desk. The documents are delivered either in digitized form (by e-mail) or in printed form (to be collected at the Library desk, or sent by internal mail to your EPFL business address).

You will be notified of the loan duration when you borrow the document. Some documents are only available for on-site consultation at EPFL Library, in accordance with the request of the owner library.

It is sometimes possible to extend the interlibrary loans duration. To proceed so, please contact [email protected] before the document expires. You are responsible for returning the document to EPFL Library, at the latest by the due date. In case of delay, you will be charged. Please consult the Library fees.

Request form

EPFL member ?
Your personal data
* Mandatory fields
Your request

Please indicate your request urgency level in the comments.

■   Library fees


■   FAQ

A dedicated FAQ is available to answer your questions during the closure of the Library and the Rolex Learning Center during the coronavirus crisis (COVID-19).
More information

  • End of the loan duration: claim, free of charge
  • 10th day: 1st reminder, CHF 10 per document
  • 20th day: 2nd reminder, CHF 20 per document
  • 30th day: 3rd reminder, CHF 35 per document + reader account blocked
  • thereafter: collection by legal means, 300 CHF (Switzerland) / 500 CHF (abroad)

Please check your reader account regularly to see the status of your loans. Indeed, it can happen that automatic e-mails are not accepted by the filters of the messaging system and then go into spams. The non-receipt of these notices or reminders cannot be used as an excuse for the late return of documents.

The loan period is 4 weeks for the research collection documents; 2 weeks for the teaching collection documents. Some documents may have a shorter loan period (1 week for video games and consoles, 3 days for DVDs, etc.).

The loan period is indicated for each document in the BEAST catalogue.

Except in exceptional cases, it is possible to extend the loan of a document 5 times, as long as the document is not reserved by someone else.

After 5 extensions, the document must be presented at EPFL Library desk. An extension cannot cancel a fine: please respect the return deadline. You will also find in your online account information about loan periods and possible extensions.

Extensions are only possible if the documents are not reserved by another user:

After 5 extensions, the document must be presented at the Library desk. An extension cannot delete a fine: please respect the return deadlines.

You can return your document anytime in the large white boxes located in the Library or at the desks. You can mail them to the Library at your expense. In this case, the document must arrive before the loan duration expires.


[email protected]

021 693 21 56