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Mineralogical Almanac  

News on January 15 - February 20, 2004


Meetings, conference, exhibitions


February 3--6, 2004 - two specialized exhibitions took place in the All-Russia Exhibition Center.

First, Diamonds and Gems of Russia was a part of preparations for the world exhibition, EXPO 2005, (to be held in Japan, March 25–September 25, 2005). The exhibition dealt with exploration and mining of the gem deposits, related technologies and, finally, lapidary and jewelry. A conference occurred during the exhibition. Here are some of the talks: Unique gem deposits and national interests of Russia by Evgeniy P. Mel’nikov, Chairman of Russian Gemologist Society, Prospects for the gem market after Russia joins WTO by Yuriy B. Shelement’ev, Chief of the Expertise Department, Gemological Center of the Lomonosov Moscow State University, Artificial Gems: Past, present, and Future by Elena M. Suchkova et al.), Temporary Gemology and gemological education by Yulia P. Solodova. More than 50 institutions and entrepreneurs participated, including ALROSA Ltd. (Russian leader in mining of diamond), Samotsvety (Gems) Museum, V.M. Vassil’yev lapidaties (Nizhny Taghil, www.malachite.ru), Kamennyi Tsvvetok (Stone Flower) Firm, etc.

Second, Gold 2004: from Deposits to Jewelry, the 6th International Exhibition and conference, presented techniques and equipment designed for gold exploration and jewelry.

February 4–6: Geological department of the Lomonosov Moscow State University held the 12th scientific seminar: The System of Planet Earth – Non-Traditional Geological Problems; the first seminar occurred 10 years back in 1994. Vitaly Ya. Gerasimenko, a staff member of the Ershov Geological Museum, the Moscow Mining University, presented his report, On Regional Mineral Cadastres. T.B. Pichugina (Rambler Network) presented report Science as Reflected by the Mass Media.


On February 16 and 18, 2004, Brian Jackson (National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh), presented two reports (in the Geological Department of MSU and Fersman Mineralogical Museum) First, on zeolite minerals (brewsterite and harmotome) from the classical mineral deposits of Scotland, the Isle of Sky and Strontian, and second, on the Leadhills ore field history (mined since 1239!) and mineralogy. Currently about 90 mineral species are known to occur there, of which nine were discovered there. Mines are out of operation, but the panning championships of the United Kingdom and even the world ones are held here. Presentation included a slide show illustrating minerals, views of mines and exposures, etc.).

December 25-28, 2003. Eighth Annual Jewelry-Mineralogical International Exhibition-Fair “PETERSBURG JEWELER-2003” passed in Saint Petersburg, in the Central show-room “Manezh”, organized by Exhibition Association “World of Stone”. Over 300 firms and businessmen presented their production on the area more than 5,000 sq. m. The next album “Jeweler Olympus” was published for the exhibition, which included the best works exhibited at “Petersburg Jeweler-003” (based on site http: // www.rosbalt.ru/2003/12/25/136534.html).


Memorable dates

March 16, 1879, Pyotr Lyudovikovich Dravert was born, a mineralogist, geologist, and poet (See Among Minerals, Moscow, 1998, p. 33–36, in Russian).

January 19, 1817: a group of researchers founded the St. Petersburg Mineralogical Society (currently, the All-Russia Mineralogical Society).

January 19, 1961: Geologists M.G. Ravich and B.I. Revnov found the first iron meteorite in the Droning Maud Land, Antarctic, named the Lazarev (M.A. Nazarov, 1999).

January 25, 1905: the Cullinan diamond of 3,106 ct, the largest stone of the kind, was found in the Premier kimberlite pipe.

January 25, 1917: Richard Gaines, an outstanding American mineralogist was born (d. Jan. 21, 1999). Mineral gainessite was named after him (about him Mineralogical Record, 1991, v. 30, p. 249–250).

January 27, 1879, Pavel Petrovich Bazhov, an author of stories and legends about Uralian diggers and miners (The Stone Flower and other legends in the Malachite Case book) was born into a family of Uralian mining workers and lapidists (d. 1950). See www.bazhov.ru for his biography, photos, and stories in Russian.

January 29, 2001, the first meeting of the Gemologist Society occurred at the Geological Department of the Lomonosov Moscow State University, and the first issue of Vestnik Gemmologii [Gemological Herald] was published.

January 31, 1910: Academician Vladimir Ivanovich Smirnov was born (d. 1988), a geologist and specialist in metallogeny and geology of ore deposits. Mineral vismirnovite is named in his honor.

January 1999, the first volume of Mineralogical Almanac, a new illustrated annual magazine for mineralogists and collectors, was published. The title is Gold: nuggets of Russia by Lyudmila S. Sher.

January–February, 1970: Alexandra Rybochkina, Mikhail Nazarov, Alexander Evseev, and other students of the Lomonosov Moscow State University discovered a celestite occurrence near Shurab, North Tajikistan; that year and later many geodes with gypsum and celestite crystals has been found here.

February 1755: Prokofiy and Grigoriy Demidov donated to the “newly born” Moscow University a collection of minerals and equipment. This collection consists of two parts – first was  bought by their father from Professor Johann F Henkel, Saxony, and another part - samples from the Urals and Siberia. Cost of this collection was estimated as an impressive sum of 20,000 gold rubles. This collection became core of the Moscow University collection, the best in the Russia in the 19th century. In the 1920s the collection was transferred to the Moscow Geological Prospecting Institute and subsequently in 1988 became a part of the Vernadsky State Geological Museum collection.

February 1947: Sikhote-Alin meteorite fall in the Russian Far East; it has been the largest meteorite found on the territory of the former Soviet Union.

February 1989: a new geological museum had been opened in the Moscow Mining Institute (6 Leninsky Prospect, Moscow). Currently, the institute became a University, and the museum is named after V.V. Ershov.

February 1, 1927: Evgeniy I. Semyonov was born, a mineralogist and a researcher of the alkali plutons who discovered many new minerals. Mineral semenovite found in Greenland was named in his honor by Danish colleagues.

February 4, 1924: Constantin I. Chapizhny was born (d. 1989). Ravil V. Galiulin named him a mineralogist of the strongest geometrical imagination (more information see in Russian http://www.galiulin.narod.ru/CHAPIZHN.htm).

February 5, 1878: Vissarion V. Karandeev, a mineralogist and crystallographer, was born (d. 1916). He was a lecturer of the Chair of Mineralogy, Lomonosov Moscow State University and a supporter of V.I. Vernadsky.

February 8, 1831: the Government-supported studies started at the emerald deposits in the Urals. Yakov V. Kokovin, a supervisor of the Ekaterinburg lapidaries, visited the pit dug by Kozhevnikov, a peasant who managed to discover emeralds in the Urals at the roots of the tempest-fallen tree; having found the pit unreliable he ordered a new pit to be dug near the old one, and this stroke a rich vein almost immediately (see V.B. Semyonov’s publication in Ural, 2001, No. 7)

February 8, 1935: Boris E. Borutsky was born, a mineralogist graduated from the Lomonosov  Moscow State University and a principal researcher of IGEM RAS who has been studying mineralogy and origin of the Khibiny and other alkali plutons (see also in Russian http://geo.web.ru/conf/CD_Smirnov/html_99/30_baruts/index.html for data on him and his verse).

February 9: Elena V. Pryakhina was born, a chief of the Mineralogical museum of the Moscow Geological Prospecting and Mining University.

February 10, 1810: Archangelo Scacchi, an Italian mineralogist and researcher of the Mt. Vesuvius minerals, was born. During the period from 1841 through 1884, he discovered 22 new minerals in the Monte Somma – Vesuvius area. His huge collection he started in 1844 currently occupies an hall of the Royal Mineralogical Museum in Naples (www.musei.unina.it/Mineralogia/eng/2.1.1.htm).

February 13, 1970, the Friends of Mineralogy Society was founded at George Bideaux’s house in Tucson, Arizona, United States.


On Book Shelve


On January 2004 the Mineralogical Almanac, volume 7 was published. The title is Kukisvumchorr deposit (Khibiny, Kola Peninsula, Russia): ; The authors are Igor V. Pekov, a well-known mineralogist, and Alexander S. Podlesny, a collector who works as a blaster at the local mine.

The Grandmasters of Mineral Photographing -- this album is a real gift to those who is interested in the art of mineral photography.


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