An experimental programme to investigate the implementation of photofission was initiated at Orsay in 2000. Isotopic cross sections were measured with a 50-MeV electron beam from the LEP Pre-Injector (LPI) at Cern, a machine that was subsequently transferred and installed at Orsay in 2005. The first electron beam at the new
site was accelerated in 2006. After a long development programme including reinforcement of the radiation shielding around the target and a major facelift of the PARRNe mass separator, the licence for operation at the full nominal intensity of 10 µA was granted in 2012. It represents the beginning of ALTO-LEB (Low-energy beams).