The proposal is to develop and transform the Äspö Hard Rock Laboratory (Äspö HRL), an underground research laboratory in Oskarshamn owned and managed by the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co (SKB) with associated facilities and the industrial SICADA database with raw data from all SKB-related site activities and investigations, to a National Geosphere Laboratory (NGL), which will provide unique possibilities to address the key scientific challenges related to the geosphere.
By adding long-term observation and investigation dimensions, NGL aims to establish itself as a world-unique, long-term 4D (3D space and time) field observatory. This will enable identification and quantification of long-term cause-effect relations, which in turn will improve interpretations, distinctions and projections. NGL will be an open national research infrastructure for basic and applied research across a wide range of related and complementary geo-environmental, earth-system science, bio-system science and geo-system engineering disciplines. NGL will facilitate joint investigations of related subsurface-surface systems. This will generate novel process-system-model insights and technological developments, and fill critical field observation-experimentation and methodological-technological gaps across the disciplines.