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Akka mountain.jpg
Áhkká seen from the lake
Location Norrbotten County, Lappland
Coordinates 67°38′07″N 17°38′29″E / 67.63528°N 17.64139°E / 67.63528; 17.64139Coordinates: 67°38′07″N 17°38′29″E / 67.63528°N 17.64139°E / 67.63528; 17.64139
Type man-made reservoir
Primary inflows 55% from Voujatätno river, 25% from nine other rivers, 20% via tunnel from Sitasjaure dam[1]
Primary outflows Lule River (Luleälven), below Suorva dam[1]
Catchment area 4,650 km2 (1,795 sq mi)[1]
Basin countries Sweden
Max. length 60 km (37 mi)[1]
Max. width 5 km (3.1 mi)[1]
Surface area 266 km2 (103 sq mi)[1]
Average depth 30 m (98 ft)[1]
Max. depth 92 m (302 ft)[1]
Water volume 5.9 km3 (1.4 cu mi)
Surface elevation 453 m (1,486 ft)[1]
References [1]

Akkajaure is one of the largest reservoirs in Sweden.[1] It lies at the headwaters of the Lule River in Norrbotten County, in Swedish Lappland, within the Stora Sjöfallet national park. The lake formed after the construction of the first Suorva dam in 1913–1923.[1] The rim of the current dam is at an elevation of 453 m (1,486 ft).[1] When full, the lake's maximum depth is 92 m (302 ft), and its mean depth is about 30 m (98 ft).[1] Because it is used for power generation, the lake depth fluctuates by up to 30 m (98 ft).[1]

On 12 November 1944, Avro Lancaster bombers of RAF squadrons 9 and 617 flying from Lossiemouth and Milltown rendezvoused over Akkajaure and began their approach to destroy the German battleship Tirpitz.[2] The lake was readily recognizable from the air and its location afforded time to climb to the attack altitude of 14,000–16,000 feet (4,300–4,900 m) and for a required five minutes of straight and level flying to the target for the bombsights to stabilize. Twenty-nine bombers made the rendezvous on time and attacked as planned. Two other bombers arrived late over the lake, proceeded on course, found the Tirpitz already capsized from the previous attack, and returned to Scotland with their bombs intact.[3]

A report that the rendzvous point was instead a "lake 100 miles [160 km] south-east of Tromsø"[4] is not accurate.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Sahlberg, J (2003), "Physical modelling of the Akkajaure reservoir", Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 7 (3): 268–282 
  2. ^ http://www.museumsnett.no/midttromsmuseum/mtm/Tirpitz/tirpitz%20historie/tallboy.htm
  3. ^ Jeffrey Watkins, presentation 28 October 2008 to symposium "The Sinking of the German Battleship Tirpitz", San Diego, Calif., US (his current residence). Watkins piloted one of the 29 Lancasters in the successful attack.
  4. ^ http://www.raf.mod.uk/bombercommand/tirpitz.html