The building was designed by Henning Larsen (1925-2013) and was inaugurated by King Carl XVI Gustaf in 2001. Its arched façade is 200 metres long and curves around the round entrance building (the Rotunda), which contains a library and auditoriums and is crowned by an observatory dome. The exterior is characterised by strip windows against a warmly bright, plastered façade.

The building’s perhaps grandest example of the basic idea of functionalism – that form follows function – are the three sculptural ventilation pipes at the northern entrance. AlbaNova is the biggest facility of its kind in Northern Europe, with a floor surface of about 45,000 square metres. Located in one of the newly renovated hospital buildings is Vetenskapens Hus (House of Science), a science laboratory for collaboration with primary and secondary schools.

What is here today

Education and research are conducted in the fields of physics, astronomy and biotechnology by both Stockholm University and the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH). One of the main purposes of this building is for both institutions to learn from each other and develop collaborative projects. Karolinska Institutet is currently also a collaboration partner.

Fun facts

In 2001, Henning Larsen received the “Stockholmspriset” award for designing the building that made the biggest contribution to the beautification of Stockholm that year, and for the best improvement of the urban environment.

The AlbaNova dome has one of Sweden’s largest optical telescopes, with a mirror diameter of 1 metre and a focal length of 11 metres. It weighs a total of 2.3 tons.