Women since ages are fighting with stereotypes and taboos prevailing in this judgemental society. Women have been still proving themselves all through these eras. Many of them have been an inspiration.Women have always faced oppression and have been made believe that they are weaker than the opposite gender. Some professions were marked with a tag called only for men and women were never allowed to pursue them. But women have overcome these problems and set an example for others. As a tribute to all these women, Here are 4 women who reached heights in the flied of aeronautics.
- Valentina Tereshkova
‘The First Lady of Space’, who has flown in space in early as 1963. This happened when she was selected as pilot for Vostok 6 by Russian Premier Nikita Khrushchev himself. Valentina’s parachuting skills was also seen while re-entry of Vostok 6 to the earth, when she was forced to eject at about 7000 feet with a parachute for a safe landing. Valentina conducted biomedical and science experiments to understand the effects of space on the human body and even took photographs that helped NASA identify aerosols in the earth’s atmosphere.
“A bird cannot fly with one wing only. Human space flight cannot develop any further without the active participation of women.”
- 2. Kalpana Chawla
- She is the first Indian woman to visit space. KalpanaChawla, set foot into space shuttle Columbia back in 1997. She began to work at NASA at the Ames Research Centre in 1988. After certain years she took her first space mission on November 19th, 1997. She died on February 1st, 2003 because of Space shuttle Columbia disaster. She was posthumously awarded for her contributions to the flied.“When you look at the stars and the galaxy, you feel that you are not just from any particular piece of land, but from the solar system.”
- Sunita Williams
Sunita Williams is a United States navy officer of Indian descent. She holds records for longest spacewalks by a woman. After completing her masters from Florida, she joined United States navy in May 1987. She began her astronaut training at the Johnson Space Centre in August 1998. Her first mission into space was with STS-116, where she went aboard the space shuttle discovery on December 2006, to join the expedition 14 crew. During this journey she carried with a book of Bhagavath Gita, Ganesha idol and some samosas. She is currently working with Boeing and Space X, to train in their commercial crew vehicles along with other astronauts.
“Don’t get bogged down by the notion of limits. There aren’t any.”
- Sally ride
She is one of the youngest and first American woman to travel the space. She joined NASA in 1978. She worked with the committees that investigated ‘Challenger’ and ‘Columbia’ space shuttle disasters. She was the only person who participated in both of these committees. Her first mission was of STS-7 in 1983. Ride during that time was targeted by press with some silly questions like, “Will the flight affect your reproductive organs?” and “Do you weep when things go wrong on your job?” She answered them we effectively saying that before she is anything else she is and always would be an astronaut. She was the first female astronaut to use robotic arm to retrieve a satellite.
“I think it’s important for little girls growing up, and young women, to have one in every walk of life. So from that point of view, I’m proud to be a role model!”