The Large Lakes Observatory is an academic and research unit within the Swenson College of Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota Duluth.   Our focus on the large lakes of Earth means that our work supports the sustainability of well over half of the accessible freshwater on Earth.

For more details about our history and mission, check out our Institutional Profile published in the ASLO Bulletin.

LLO's research takes us from East Africa to Central Asia, Central and South America and beyond. Close ties have been formed with institutes in Canada, Uganda, France, Norway, Kyrgyzstan, Kenya, Nicaragua, Malawi, Tanzania, China, Mexico, Spain, Germany and the United Kingdom, as well as with many universities within the United States. The nearby Laurentian Great Lakes are always in our sights.  LLO brings an interdisciplinary perspective to its research, including aquatic organic and inorganic chemistry, circulation dynamics, acoustic remote sensing, plankton, benthos and microbial dynamics, paleoclimatology and others.  Our full-time faculty all have appointments both at LLO and at disciplinary departments, and they are joined by MS and PhD students in several graduate programs as well as a highly capable administrative, maritime and technical staff.  

LLO is one of the largest water-focused centers of research in the entire University of Minnesota system with strong ties to the Institute on the Environmentthe Limnological Research Center and the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior on the Twin Cities Campus.  The large and vibrant water science community of the Twin Ports, including the Natural Resources Research Institute and Minnesota Sea Grant on the Duluth Campus, as well as the nearby EPA's Mid-Continent Ecology Division and the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve are frequent and consistent partners with LLO.