The Royal Institute of Technology
or Kungliga Tekniska högskolan
) is a university
. KTH was founded in 1827 and is with TKK
, depending on definition, Scandinavia's largest institution of higher education in technology and one of the leading technical universities in Europe
The main campus building at Valhallavägen
, by architect Erik Lallerstedt
, was completed in 1917. The buildings and surroundings were decorated by prominent early 20th century Swedish artists such as Carl Milles
, Axel Törneman
, Georg Pauli
, Tore Strindberg
and Ivar Johnsson
. The older buildings on the campus went through a complete renovation in 1994. While the original campus was large for its time, KTH very soon outgrew it and the campus was expanded with new buildings. Today KTH institutions and faculties are distributed across several campuses in Stockholm County
, located in Flemingsberg
in addition to the ones in Östermalm.
The origin of the school was the Technological Institute (Teknologiska institutet
), which was started in 1827. In 1877 the name was changed into the current one.
After the American deployment of nuclear weapons at the end of World War II, the Swedish military leadership recognized the need for nuclear weapons to be thoroughly investigated and researched to provide Sweden with the knowledge to defend itself from a nuclear attack. At that time, Sweden knew virtually nothing about nuclear physics
, as all information and research around were kept strictly confidential by the United States. With the mission to "make something with neutrons", the Swedish team, with scientists like Rolf Maximilian Sievert
, set out to research the subject and eventually build a nuclear reactor
After a few years of basic research, they started building a 300 kW (later expanded to 1 MW) reactor, named "Reaktor 1", R1 for short, in a reactor hall 25 meters under the surface right underneath KTH. Today this might seem ill-considered, since approximately 40,000 people lived within a 1 km radius. It was risky, but were deemed tolerable since the reactor was an important research tool for scientists at the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (Ingenjörsvetenskapsakademien).
At 18:59, 13 July 1954, the reactor reached critical mass and sustained Sweden's first nuclear reaction. R1 was to be the main site for almost all Swedish nuclear research until 1970 when the reactor was finally decommissioned, mostly due to the increased awareness of the risks associated with operating a reactor in a densely populated area of Stockholm. The reactor hall remains an amusement to many as once it was next door to what used to be Sweden's first nuclear reactor. Close to the reactor hall is the restaurant Q.
From 2005 KTH is organized into nine schools each consisting of a number of departments:
Many Swedish industrial leaders have graduated from KTH.
- Salomon August Andrée, Arctic Explorer
- Ernst Alexanderson, Inventor
- Kurt Atterberg, Composer (graduated 1911)
- Karl-Birger Blomdahl, Composer
- Börje Ekholm, CEO of Investor
- Knut Frænkel, Arctic Explorer
- Christer Fuglesang, Astronaut
- Kurt Hellström, former CEO of Ericsson
- Ivar Kreuger, Industrialist
- Dolph Lundgren, Actor
- Carl Munters, Inventor
- Helge Palmcrantz, Inventor
- Baltzar von Platen, Inventor
- Tinga Seisay, Diplomat
- Karl Johan Åström, Control Engineer, IEEE Medal of Honor recipient (1993)