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The dam that was built as part of Messaure Hydro Power Station in 1957–1963 was one of the largest in Europe at the time and still remains the largest if you count the amount of filling material used. It is Vattenfall’s most extensive dam construction. The dam at Messaure is nearly 2 kilometres long and 101 metres high. To get the amount of filling material into perspective, it has been said to be equivalent to the amount of material used in four Cheops pyramids.


The construction of the dam was observed by foreign experts, and after completion it was the subject of international seminars. The largest fleet of trucks and lorries ever used was required to transport the filling material. In 1960 there were 150 trucks and 270 drivers, working in shifts under strong economic pressure. There were 60 mechanics employed solely to maintain and service the machinery.

Grand opening

The grand opening of Messaure Power Station on 31 August 1963 became even more extraordinary since it coincided with the opening of Porsi and Laxede Power Stations. The Swedish prime minister at the time, Tage Erlander, held the opening ceremony, and trains transported members of parliament and government officials from Stockholm. The banquet afterwards had 1,800 attendees and took place in the large halls where the trucks and machinery had been serviced. In his speech, Erlander pointed out the fact that during the first 50 years of the century, Sweden had enjoyed an energy price that was 50% lower than competing countries – largely thanks to hydro power.

Messaure Power Station was designed in a way that made it possible to add a third unit to the initial two units. The third unit was constructed and installed in 1980–1983.Today Messaure is one of Vattenfall’s largest hydro power plants.

Characteristics of the Lule Älv River

Hydro power is a reliable, safe and renewable source of energy. Today, hydro power accounts for nearly half of Sweden’s total electricity demand. The Lule Älv River, by which Messaure is located, is Vattenfall’s and Sweden’s most important river for hydro power generation.