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Nancy Roman, "Hubble's Mother", died at 93



Nancy Grace Roman, a famous astronomer who led the ride to launch the Hubble Space Telescope, died on Dec. 25 at the age of 93, according to the Associated Press.

Novel was called "Hubble's mother" for her work on the pioneering telescope, which began in 1990. She joined NASA headquarters immediately after the establishment of the agency in 1958. She was the first head of astronomy, ready to offer freedom to create such a key department from scratch.

The previous astronomer, Liman Spitzer, proposed to examine the idea of ​​an optical telescope based on space in 1946, but the budget and technology needed for such a project were not available. Roman began to discuss the idea in 1960, three decades before the instrument enters. She also helped lead the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE), another orbiting instrument. [Hubble in Pictures: Astronomers’ Top Picks (Photos)]

"She allowed the early telescopes [into space] to learn what it takes to learn, "said scientist historian Bob Zimmermann for Space.com in 2009." After that technology began to mature, she advocated the design work. Her stubborn nature helped build a telescope. "

Nancy Grace Roman was the first head of astronomy at the Space Science Office at NASA headquarters, and helped in the battle over what would become the Hubble Space Telescope. It is seen here in 1963 with the model of the Orbital Solar Observatory.

Nancy Grace Roman was the first head of astronomy at the Space Science Office at NASA headquarters, and helped in the battle over what would become the Hubble Space Telescope. It is seen here in 1963 with the model of the Orbital Solar Observatory.

Credit: NASA / Kepler Team

During decades of observation, the Hubble Space Telescope has changed the way astronomers and science lovers see the universe around us with their stunning images.

But the path of Roman to the leadership of NASA was fraught with the usual challenges. Although her mother took her off during the long Misterian Evenings to emphasize the constellations and follow the northern lights, teachers often rejected their interest in mathematics and science.

"From the very beginning I was told that a woman can not be an astronomer," she said in a video published by NASA earlier this year. In high school, her counseling counselor was also unsupported by her academic interests. "He looked at me nose and mocked me:" What lady will you take mathematics instead of Latin? " ""

She later earned a degree in Astronomy at Swartmore College, and then completed a Ph.D. at the University of Chicago, where her advisor on the thesis once ignored six months, said Roman later.

She was a decade out of a doctorate when joining NASA. Roman withdrew from the agency in 1969. After her retirement, she regularly talked about the importance of making astronomy equally, and last year, she was immortalized in NASA's Lego Feminine.

E-mail Meghan Bartels at mbartels@space.com or follow it @meghanbartels. Follow us @Spacedotcom and Facebook. Original article on Space.com.


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