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Lydia Leonyuk (1950-2000)

[Lydia Leonyuk]Lydia Leonyuk died on September 23, 2000, after a struggle of three years with cancer. She was born in St.-Petersburg and graduated from Moscow State U. in 1972. Lydia had a very successful career in solid state physics, crystallography and crystal growth. She received a PhD in Crystallography and Crystal Physics under Nikolas V. Belov (1978) and published more than 200 papers and two books. In 1995, she was awarded a DSc degree by the Faculty of Physics, Moscow State U. for her contributions to the field of superconducting cuprates. In 1996, she prepared and described a new family of superconducting cuprates with a ladder-type structure. Recently, she applied the knowledge of cuprate motifs in oxysalts to minerals.

She was the Head of the Laboratory of Crystal Growth and a leader of research projects supported by the Russian National Program on Superconductivity, the European Community and the USA. She received grants for work in laboratories in London, Paris, Nantes, Geneva, and Warsaw and had joint projects with universities in Sweden, Germany, Japan, and China. She was a dedicated teacher and a member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences.

Lydia loved her research, and it was exciting to work with her. With the support of her husband, Nikolai, she accepted her terminal illness courageously. I am sure that, like myself, many other crystallographers around the world will miss the superb experimental expertise of Lydia and remember her as a charming person and a precious friend.

Elena V. Sokolova