Before 1905

Ernst Abbe makes his extensive private book collection available to the scientific staff at the Zeiss company in Jena.


After the death of Ernst Abbe, the private book collection received the status of a “company library”. These holdings form the origin of today’s university library.



Library expansion through the purchase of numerous valuable professors' book collections from professors and subject-specific current literature from all over the world for the Zeiss factory library.


Establishment of the patent department and start of collecting relevant patent documents.


The know-how of the Zeiss factory is brought to the USA and the Soviet Union as reparation payment. That includes a part of the patent collection which was sent to the USA and a part of the library which was sent to the Soviet Union. Many books are borrowed through “confidential calls” in order to avoid the announced deportation to Russia.


The library continues to operate as the company library of what is now the “state-owned company Carl Zeiss JENA”.


Founding of the library at the school of engineering for scientific instrument construction "Carl Zeiss" in Jena.


Reconstruction of the Zeiss library with a modern reading room and open stacks.


The Zeiss Library in Jena is responsible for coordinating all company libraries connected to the “Kombinat Carl Zeiss JENA" in the combine companies in Dresden, Saalfeld, Suhl, Freiberg, Rathenow, Lommatsch, Eisfeld, and Gera with correspondingly expanded personnel, technical and financial resources.

Due to the outstanding position of the Zeiss combine in the GDR (German Democratic Republic) economy at the time, more literature from western countries could be acquired through the Zeiss representatives in these countries and through additional government aid.


First use of computer technology to create a literature database relevant to Zeiss and a digital library catalogue for the Zeiss library that can initially only be used offline.


Partial return of the books that were confiscated from the Soviet Union in 1946.  Those parts of the historically valuable books which belonged to the state-owned combine were stored in the Jena Optical Museum.


First online research in the INSPEC fund through cross-border cooperation by employees of the Zeiss Library.

Information Service for Physics, Electronics, and Computing (INSPEC) contains over 19 million data sets and is one of the most relevant databases for subject-specific and interdisciplinary research in engineering, physics and computer science.


Merging of the library, research center and patent library to form the “Central Information” area of ​​Carl Zeiss Jena Jenoptik Ltd.


The library, research center and patent library form for now on the “Central Information” area of ​​Carl Zeiss Jena Jenoptik GmbH.


Transfer of the library and its holdings from JENOPTIK Ltd. to the newly founded University of Applied Sciences Jena and renaming as a university library. Initially, stocks had to be stored in temporary rooms due to lack of space.


The university library temporarily occupies space on the University of Jena campus in the city center on Carl-Zeiss-Straße. Finally the holdings acquired since 1990 and the bound volumes of journals since 1980 could be united for the first time.


As a participant in the Common Library Network (GBV), the university library begins to index its holdings electronically in the union catalogue. In addition, a local library system has been installed together with the ThULB Jena as a requirement for the online catalogue (OPAC) - the acquisition module and the electronic lending system.


The university library moves to the University of Applied Sciences campus in the Carl Zeiss Promenade. Now it has a large open stacks area on three floors and a reading room. The library opens on October 4th, 2000. Now, for the first time, all of the inventory, some of which had been stored in boxes years ago, could be set up. Since then, the valuable collection of the former Zeiss library with its special holdings on precision mechanics and optics, some of which date back to the 17th century, has also been available for use.

With the opening of the library, electronic lending is introduced, with the advantage that users can renew borrowed books at any time from home or other locations.


Alongside the universities of Jena and Ilmenau, the library of the University of Applied Sciences Jena is the only Thuringian university of applied sciences that received the status of “patent information center” from the German Patent and Trademark Office in Munich (DPMA).


Introduction of the Acquisition Module (ACQ). The system allows acquisitions to be managed more efficiently. Our library users can now use the online catalogue to research which titles are already on order in bookstores. These are displayed with the note “ordered”.


The long-time library director, Mr. Löbnitz retires and passes the baton on to Mrs. Heist.


Increased acquisition of electronic media, especially e-books, for studying and teaching due to the corona pandemic.


Replacement of all IT technology in the public service area and purchase of a new book scanner.


Introduction of KATALOGplus, a new research tool (discovery system) to facilitate media research in the library holdings.