Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences Tjärnö | Assemble+

Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences Tjärnö


The Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences is a newly-established research infrastructure organisation within the University of Gothenburg. The Centre integrates the research capacities of two very well-established marine research stations and several research vessels. Both marine stations are situated on the Swedish west coast, one at Kristineberg (former Kristineberg Marine Research Station) about 100 km north of Göteborg and the other at Tjärnö (former Tjärnö Marine Biological Laboratory) 160 km north of Göteborg.


SLC is the largest Swedish marine research infrastructure unit, and is financed by UGOT. SLC has 43 employees at the two field stations in Kristineberg and Tjärnö. Including “resident scientists”, a total of ca.150 people work year-round at SLC. With its excellent lodging (165 berth places) and restaurant facilities, the SLC hosts national and international student courses, summer schools, workshops and conferences. Sweden's only true fjord Gullmarn is easily accessible from Kristineberg and the marine national park Kosterhavet is very close to the Tjärnö. Research focuses on climate change, ocean acidification, microplastics, molecular biology, aquaculture, ecosystem functioning, blue biotechnology, and maritime technologies. SLC provides access to the west coast of Sweden from cold water coral reefs to eel-grass meadows.

The research station at Tjärnö is situated at the Koster fjord which in 2009 was the first Swedish Marine National Park. The marine surroundings cover easy-to-reach low-impacted marine environments of a wide range of shallow and deep habitats, including deep cold-water coral reefs, all of which lie within 5-20 minutes from the research station. The great potential for field sampling and outdoor experimental manipulations, combined with indoor facilities for maintenance, culture, experiment and analysis, make this station an excellent resource for coastal marine research.


Main Services


Laboratories and climate-controled rooms with access to all basic research equipment and technical support from staff.


Access to the four platforms equipment and support from technical staff.

1. Marine Chemical Ecology Laboratory

Provides standard and state-of- the-art laboratory equipment for extraction, isolation, identification and quantification of natural products. Several cultured and wild organisms are also available, e.g. for bioassay-guided-fractionation of extracted metabolites. Special instrumentation includes:

  • Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometer (Q-TOF, Agilent 6540) New 2012 
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometer (Electron Impact and Chemical Ionization)
  • Analytical and preparative High Performance Liquid
  • Chromatography-systems with UV-, fluorescens- and refractive index- detectors

2. Marine Molecular Biology and Genetics Laboratories:

Provides all the necessary equipment for population genetic and phylogenetic studies, including DNA/RNA extraction and quantification equipment, PCR and sequencing equipment and imaging systems for electrophoresis.


3. Biohydrodynamic Laboratory

Provides two flume tanks. Can be operated with seawater and be partially temperature controlled (15-20° C).

  • 7 m recirculating flume tank (flow speed: 0.001-0.5 m/s)
  • 1.5 m recirculating flume tank (for small-scale flows; 0.001-0.15 m/s)

Three types of equipment for flow measurements and flow visualisation

  • Acoustic Doppler Velocimeter (Nortek) for laboratory use. This ADV measures the 3-diemnsional flow velocity in a 6x6x6 mm volume of water with a sampling frequency of 25 Hz.
  • Particle Image Velocimetry (LaVision) for laboratory use. This advanced PIV-system measures the 2-dimensional flow field with up to 15 Hz. The PIV-system also includes a module for Planar-Laser-Induced-Fluorescence (PLIF) used to visualize and measure the flow of dissolved markers.
  • Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (Nortek). This ADCP is used for field work and is typically operated in a bottom-deployed mode where the 3-dimensional velcoity is measured in up to 30 vertical layers with a sampling frequency up to 2 Hz.

4. Special Motion Behaviour Analysis Laboratory


Marine facilities

  • Smaller vessel: 15 m R/V Nereus vessel with access to all research equipments and technical support from vessel crew.
  • ROV: 12 m R/V Lophelia with access to Sperre SubFighter ROV (700 m depth capability, manipulator, sample storage, CTD, video- and still photography) and other onboard equipment with technical support from vessel crew.

Marine models

The unique and high level of organismal diversity available at the Lovén Centre includes many current and emerging marine model organisms, for example Ciona intestinalis, Balanus improvisus, Skeletonema marinoi and Myxine glutinosa.

A list of marine organisms found in the North East Atlantic can be found here. A list of the species that, so far, can be maintained and spawned at the Lovén centre can be downloaded here.

SLC Tjärnö
University of Gothenburg, The Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences
452 96 Strömstad
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