15 Sep FEMALE ENGINEERS WHO MADE HISTORY
- Emily Warren
Emily Warren is one of the most famous female engineers for her dedication to completing the Brooklyn Bridge. After her husband, a civil engineer named Washington Roebling, developed a crippling decompression disease, Emily stepped into the role and became known as the first woman field engineer in history.
From this moment forward, she took on the task of completing the Brooklyn Bridge, relaying the progress to her husband as she visited him during his sickness. For 14 years, Emily’s life revolved around this production and took on each of the chief engineer’s responsibilities, with the help of her husband as she visited him. By 1883, the bridge was complete, and Emily was the first to cross.
- Ellen Ochoa
Not only one of the most famous female engineers, but a former astronaut and current Director of the Johnson Space Center, Ellen Ochoa is an impressive woman to say the least. She is the co-creator of three inventions. Each invention is used by scientists to see images that come from space in a more refined way.
These include an optical object recognition method, a method for noise removal, and an optical inspection system. Plus, in 1991, she became the first Hispanic female astronaut in the world, a groundbreaking moment for Hispanic woman everywhere. She is also the second woman to hold the title of director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center.
- Carol Vorderman
Carol Vorderman is most known for her career in television, being a Welsh media personality and host of the game show, Countdown, for 26 years. However, she is also one of the most famous female engineers, with her creation of The Math Factor. The Match Factor is an online lesson book for mathematics, which includes tutorials, videos, and programs to help students better understand math.
From primary school to algebra, the program is meant to help kids understand math in a new and easier way, and she’s more than qualified for the position of Group Captain. Carol has five degrees under her belt, and is using her knowledge to extend a helping hand to kids who struggle with comprehending math every day.
- Lillian Evelyn Moller Gilbreth
Born in 1878, Lillian Evelyn Moller Gilbreth was an American industrial engineer. Some might call her the “Mother of Invention,” as she and her husband developed surgical techniques and methods for rehabilitation for those who have physical handicaps.
Lillian used her degrees in psychology integrated with her knowledge of industrial management to bring her success as an engineer. Later in life, Lillian became of professor for universities including Purdue, Bryn Mawr, and Rutgers. Cheaper by the Dozen and Belles on Their Toes were both written by her children, Ernestine and Frank Jr.
- Edith Clarke
Next on our list of the most famous female engineers is Edith Clarke. Edith was the first female electrical engineer, specializing in electric power system analysis. She was most known for her invention of the Clark calculator, which was a graphical calculator that used electric current voltage as well as impedance in power transmission lines to solve equations.
This was created in 1921, after years of struggling to find success as an engineer, due to her gender. She also wrote Circuit Analysis of A-C Power Systems. She later went on to become the first professor of electrical engineering, where she taught at the University of Texas at Austin.
- Stephani Kwolek
Stephani Kwolek invented Kevlar, the first synthetic fibers of strength. She was awarded the DuPont company’s Lavoisier Medal, becoming the first and only female employee to receive the award. In anticipation of a gasoline shortage, Kwolek branded Kevlar, ply-paraphenylene terephthalamide.
Both a famous inventor and scientist, Kwolek originally wanted to study medicine as a career. Kevlar is resistant to flame, corrosion, and any other type wear and tear. It is the main ingredient in bulletproof vests, and has been used in most soldiers’ and law enforcement officers’ gear. Plus, it’s used in helmets, skis, and camping gear.
- Kalpana Chawla
Chawla was an aeronautical engineer graduate from Punjab Engineering College before she immigrated to America and got her US citizenship in the 1980s. She went to do her doctoral studies in aerospace engineering from the University of Colorado in 1988, and began working at NASA’s Ames Research Center the very year.