Reference numberMS/926/2/1
TitleCorrespondence regarding the procurement of Luna 24 samples for the UK, collected by Colin Pillinger
Date15 September 1976 - 30 June 1977
DescriptionTwo letters from Colin Pillinger to Professor Stanley Keith Runcorn and Sir Harrie Massey of The Royal Society suggesting approaching Russia to procure lunar samples from Mare Crisium from the Luna 24 mission, with one unsigned duplicate of the latter.

Letter from Stanley Keith Runcorn to Sir Harrie Massey in support of Colin Pillinger's suggestion to approach Russia for Luna 24 samples.

Letter from Dr S. A. Durrani to Colin Pillinger outlining possible areas of research if samples from the Luna 24 mission are obtained, with a letter from Professor N N Greenwood of the School of Chemistry at the University of Leeds confirming the institution could carry out Mossbauer spectroscopic examinations of lunar samples.

Letter from Stanley Keith Runcorn to Professor Hide requesting a letter be sent to the Soviet Academy of Sciences by the President of the Society asking for half a gram of material. Mentions that work by British laboratories on Luna 16 and 20 is about to be published in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. Letter outlines who would be involved in analysing Luna 24 samples and the nature of the tests:
G. Turner, radio-active age determinations
S. K. Runcorn magnetic studies
S. Agrell, glasses
S. A. Durani, tracks
Colin Pillinger chemistry
M. Brown, petrology
N. N. Greenwood chemistry,

Letter circulated to scientists involved in an ad hoc panel for Luna 24 samples analysis, to the Physical Secretary of the Royal Society, with a translation of a letter from G. K. Skryabin of the USSR Academy of Sciences to Sir Michael George Parke Stoker, Foreign Secretary of the Society proposing a meeting in Moscow in 1977 between a nominated member of the Society and V. L. Barsukov, Director of the V. I. Vernadski Institute of Geo-chemistry and Analytical-chemistry. Translation of a letter to Alexander Robertus Todd, president of the Society from Alexandrov, president of the USSR Academy of Sciences confirming a visit of a delegation of the Society from the 12 to the 23 September 1977.

Photocopy of document in Russian.

Letter from Stanley Keith Runcorn to Colin Pillinger mentioning Geoffrey Eglinton's visit to Moscow in May 1977. Attached are photocopies of handwritten notes about research into the Luna 24 samples to take place in the United Kingdom.

Notes sent to Colin Pillinger from Geoffrey Eglinton outlining reasons why the United Kingdom should have Luna 24 samples and a list of scientists, their institutions, proposed research and their requirements in terms of samples.

A report of the conversations held in Moscow 26 - 27 May 1977 with Florensky, Tarazov, Volkov and Ivanov about the Luna 24 samples. Includes a small hand drawn diagram of the core tube, as well as an explanation of the coding used.

Typed draft translation of the protocol dated 27 May 1977 of discussions between representatives of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR and the Society concerning the selection and presentation of lunar samples to the Society. Soviet scientists named are V. L. Barsukov, K. P. Florenskii, Yu A. Surkov, L. Starasov, A. V. Ivanov, L. N. Kogarko, V. P. Volkov, and for the British side, Geoffrey Eglinton. A description of the samples to be passed to the Society as a result of the discussion is given. Attached is the article on the presentation of the samples dated 27 May 1977, listing the sample numbers as 24090, 24125, 24196, 24170, their weight, how they are packed and that they are a non-returnable donation.

Copies of the translations of Russian transfer documents sent to the Society by Geoffrey Eglinton. Duplicate of previous item.

Photocopy of a news article in Russian about the presentation of lunar samples from Luna 24 to British scientists, with typed translation underneath.

Copies of letters by Geoffrey Eglinton to Russian scientists Dr Barsukov and Dr Florensky and Geoffrey Eglinton's notes on the samples and article about arrival of samples in the Cambridge Evening News.
Extent1 folder containing 27 items
Physical descriptionFolder of loose papers
Access statusOpen
Fellows associated with this archive
NA4367Pillinger; Colin Trevor (1943 - 2014)1943 - 2014
NA5328Runcorn; Stanley Keith (1922 - 1995)1922 - 1995
NA1702Massey; Sir; Harrie Stewart Wilson (1908 - 1983); physicist1908 - 1983
NA5073Eglinton; Geoffrey (1927 - 2016)1927 - 2016
NA4810Stoker; Sir; Michael George Parke (1918 - 2013)1918 - 2013
NA3633Todd; Alexander Robertus (1907 - 1997); Baron Todd of Trumpington1907 - 1997
Add to My Items

    Collection highlights

    Browse the records of some of our collections, which cover all branches of science and date from the 12th century onwards. These include the published works of Fellows of the Royal Society, personal papers of eminent scientists, letters and manuscripts sent to the Society or presented at meetings, and administrative records documenting the Society's activities since our foundation in 1660.

    The Royal Society

    The Royal Society is a Fellowship of many of
    the world's most eminent scientists and is the
    oldest scientific academy in continuous existence.
    Registered charity number 207043

    Website design ©CalmView


    + 44 207 451 2500
    (Lines open Mon-Fri, 9:00-17:00. Excludes bank holidays)

    6-9 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5AG

    Email Us →


    Subscribe to our newsletters to be updated with the
    latest news on innovation, events, articles and reports.

    Subscribe →

    © CalmView