Nancy Roman Hubble Telescope

Astronomer Nancy Grace Roman, also known as the “Mother of The Hubble” Telescope, has passed away at the age of 93. Roman died after an ongoing illness.

Here’s everything you must know about her

  • Nancy Grace Roman was born on May 16, 1925. She was an American astronomer. She considered her parents to be major influences in her interest in science.
  • Roman’s fascination with science started to show right from her childhood. She formed an astronomy club among her classmates in Nevada just as an 11-year-old.

It’s said that Nancy Roman, like most women, faced several problems of being a woman in the field of science, and people around discouraged her from going into astronomy. She chose not to listen and, as they say, the rest is history

  • She received her PhD in astronomy at the University of Chicago in 1949.
  • Throughout her career, she was also an active public speaker and educator.
Nancy Grace Roman | Photo Credit: Philosophy of Science Portal

Nancy Roman was the first chief of astronomy at NASA’s Office of Space Science

  • Apart from being one of the first female executives at NASA, she was famously known to many as the “Mother of Hubble” for her role in planning the Hubble Space Telescope.
  • Roman played an instrumental role in persuading the scientific community to rally around the concept of the Hubble telescope and helped in campaigning for its funding. While Hubble launched 11 years after her retirement, it’s a known fact that it was her effort and belief which made the telescope a reality.
  • Hubble Space Telescope began orbiting Earth above its atmosphere in April 1990 to capture an unobstructed view of the universe.

Roman was an advocate for women in the sciences

  • In 1962, she led the team behind NASA’s first successful astronomical mission, Orbiting Solar Observatory-1.
  • According to NASA, her awards and honours include the Women in Aerospace’s Lifetime Achievement Award, the NASA Outstanding Scientific Leadership Award, and the NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Award, among others.
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