The ultrafast beamline will facilitate studies of the structure and dynamics of materials. Such studies are of fundamental importance for key scientific problems directly related to programming materials using light, enabling new storage media and new manufacturing techniques, obtaining sustainable energy by mimicking photo-synthesis and gleaning insight into chemical and biological functional dynamics. Due to the emergence of X-ray sources with high peak brilliance, the field of pico-second X-ray diffraction has developed rapidly over the last few years. The key technology behind future breakthroughs in this area is the generation and detection of very short and very intense X-ray pulses. The femtosecond X-ray beamline at the MAX IV short-pulse facility (SPF) will have pulse lengths on the time scale of molecular vibrations (100 fs) at wavelengths matching inter-atomic distances (Å).