The station has since 1940 served as a combined research station and study center for researchers and students at Uppsala University. The first years the activity was mainly located in the summer, but it has for the past twenty years developed so that activities take place throughout the year such as winter course in limnology and research programs that run throughout the year. The Erken Laboratory has developed an extensive monitoring program for Lake Erken, which led to participation in several major EU projects focused on the effects of climate change and automatic monitoring of phytoplankton development in lakes.

Almost 70 years of research at Lake Erken

The Erken Laboratory was formally established in 1946 with the opening of laboratory in Kallviks cottage. It was initiated by Wilhelm Rodhe, who later became the first Professor of Limnology at Uppsala University. Norr Malma farm had been donated to the University of Uppsala in 1928. It was the Councillor Carl Malmén that simultaneously expressed a desire to examine the crayfish population in Lake Erken to explain its abundance in the lake. He therefore established the Malménska study fund, from which researchers and graduate students studying the ecosystem in Lake Erken may apply for funds annually until 2050. During the years of 1950-51 the new Erken Laboratory was built and the farm farmhouse was renovated for accommodation purposes. Funds for this were obtained from the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation.

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