Recent measurements of the absolute diffraction efficiency of plane gratings in the conical diffraction mounting (in which the light approaches the grating in the plane parallel to the direction of the grooves) are presented. Three gratings have been tested at the beamline BEAR (Elettra Synchrotron, Trieste) in the 10-130 nm region, showing a peak efficiency as high as 70%. The aim of these measurements is the use of two gratings in the conical diffraction mounting for the realization of a high-throughput time-compensated monochromator for the spectral selection of high-order harmonic radiation produced by the interaction between an ultrashort laser pulse (less than 100 fs) and a gas jet. The monochromatic and ultrashort pulse at the monochromator exit can be used for the injection of a Free Electron Laser. The theory of the time-compensation with gratings will be briefly resumed, the design of the monochromator will be presented, and the results of the measurements at BEAR will be discussed.© (2004) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.