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Pallas-Sodankylä LTER observatory

© Ahti Lepistö














Site description

Pallas-Sodankylä LTER observatory is located in northern Finland north of Arctic Circle. It incorporates a variety of biotopes, e.g. forests, bogs, barren mountain tops, lakes and rivers. Arctic Research Centre (ARC), i.e. Sodankylä observatory, and the Pallas Atmospheric Research station together form the Pallas-Sodankylä GAW (Global Atmosphere Watch) station, which has been operating since 1994. Upper-air soundings, climatological and other meteorological measurements are made at the Sodankylä Observatory, and tropospheric air composition and related boundary layer meteorological measurements at Pallas. The distance between the two sites is 125 km. Research infrastructure at Pallas includes also the Pallasjärvi Research Forest and Lake Pallasjärvi catchment research area, locating in the immediate vicinity of the Pallas-Yllästunturi National Park. Due to the warming effect of the Gulf Stream the observatory area is included in the boreal forest region. However, with regard to stratospheric meteorology, the observatory can be classified as an Arctic site. Its strategic location, coupled with ready accessibility from all parts of the world, makes the observatory an excellent base for studying various themes of global change in a northern context. 


© Jussi Paatero















Site aims and research themes 

The Pallas-Sodankylä LTER observatory provides data and research infrastructure that are hardly available elsewhere in that particular ecological and climate region. The main research themes involved in the Pallas-Sodankylä observatory are: 

  • Atmospheric sciences 
  • Lake Pallasjärvi and its catchment 
  • Radioecology 
  • Toxic compounds in the environment 
  • Forest ecosystems 
  • Biogeochemical cycles and hydrology  

Principal contact 

Jussi Paatero (jussi.paatero(at)fmi.fi) 

Finnish Meteorological Institute, P.O.Box 503, FIN-00101 Helsinki 


Finnish Meteorological Institute, Park and Forest Services, Natural Resources Institute Finland, Finnish Environment Institute, Lapland Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment, University of Helsinki.

Published 2013-05-06 at 13:56, updated 2017-12-05 at 15:12
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