1918 - 2020

Spaceflight trajectories

Katherine Johnson was one of the first ‘human computers’ in NASA. She worked calculating trajectories and launching windows for the Mercury and Apollo projects. Project Mercury was the first human spaceflight program in US, and the Project Apollo was the spaceflight program which successfully landed humans for the first time on the Moon.

“Math, you are either right, or you are wrong. That, I liked about it.” said Katherine Johnson.

During her early time in NASA, when she requested to attend the briefings, the answer she got was “Well, the girls don’t usually go”. But this did not stop her, and she started attending and continued her career growth.

Today, she is recognised as an extraordinary mathematician. She received many awards. She overcame barriers of gender and ethnicity bias in the US, and became an excellent role model.

Written by: Enriqueta Vallejo-Yagüe.