There are so many women that made your lives better and we are not even aware of that. Female engineers, scientists and inventors have caused unprecedented breakthroughs in the history of the world.
It is said that throughout history these achievements have been overlooked when it comes to recognition and handing out praise. It is even sadder that even these days, sometimes this can still be true.
We want to pay tribute to some of the most determined, courageous and innovative genius women inventors, while we tell you about their remarkable discoveries. They have all made our lives better by impacting the world with their inventions.
- Marie Curie: Theory of Radioactivity
- Rosalind Franklin: DNA Double Helix
- Grace Hopper: The Computer
- Stephanie Kwolek: Kevlar
- Josephine Cochrane: The Dishwasher
- Maria Beasley: The Life Raft
- Mary Anderson: Windshield Wiper
- Katharine Burr Blodgett: Non-reflective Glass
- Dr. Shirley Jackson: Modern Day Telecommunication
Marie Curie: Theory of Radioactivity
We cannot start this list with anyone else but Marie Curie – one of the greatest scientific minds of all time. She was the first person to study the Theory of Radioactivity and she also discovered that we can split an atom.
After the death of Pierre Curie, Marie’s husband, she became the first woman ever to hold the position of Professor of General Physics in the Faculty of Sciences. This genius woman received a Nobel Prize for her work with radioactivity. She received it a second time for discovering radium and polonium.
Rosalind Franklin: DNA Double Helix
Even though this discovery is often attributed to Francis Click and James Watson, they actually didn’t make the DNA Double Helix discovery. The duo won a Nobel Prize in 1962, however, the first person to capture the photographic image using x-ray diffraction was Rosalind Franklin.
This British biophysicist got her credit stolen for the discovery long ago, but luckily, Rosalind has begun to receive credit for her contributions recently. She is not the first or the last woman who did not get credit for something she invented or discovered.
Grace Hopper: The Computer
Did you know that all programs were written in numerical code prior to Hopper’s work on computers? She invented the compiler and also designed Harvard’s Mark I computer in 1944.
The compiler was used to translate written language into computer coding. Later on, she co-invented COBOL. COBOL is the first universal programming language that is used in business and government.
Grace was a Rear Admiral in the Navy and we will finish this part by saying that she also coined the terms “bug/debugging”. What an amazing woman!
Stephanie Kwolek: Kevlar
The fiber that saved countless lives was discovered by this famous woman inverter. She made this discovery when she attempted to invent an alternative for steel in radial car tiles. Stephanie wanted to turn a solid polymer into a liquid. This attempt failed, but luckily, she realized that the fibers in the “failed” substance were five times stronger than steel.
Kevlar since is used for many things. It is used in bicycle tires and the most famous use of this substance is in police protective vests. Without this invention who knows how many lives would’ve been lost.
Josephine Cochrane: The Dishwasher
These days we are lucky to say that women are able to get the same education as men. Their work is far better recognized and inventions don’t have to stand behind the men’s names.
Companies like InventHelp encourage people to submit their ideas and inventions that could hopefully change the world and make our lives better. Crunchbase was not available in the past when most of the greatest discoveries happened, however, that did not stop these women from leaving their mark in the world as we know it.
Josephine is the woman we want to thank for keeping us from having to spend hours washing every dish by hand. Her original idea was to make a mechanical dishwasher that would hold all the dishes in a rack while pressurized water sprayed them clean.
After the death of her husband, she started marketing this invention in hotels. The machine later became the standard household appliance we know and use today.
Maria Beasley: The Life Raft
Beasley invented a lot of successful devices, but her most famous one is the life raft. The emergency rafts were simple planks with no guard rails prior to Maria’s contributions.
She invented a better device that was fireproof and could easily be folded and unfolded for storage. This device had guard rails on the side to make sure people are safe inside.
Mary Anderson: Windshield Wiper
Most of the inventions happen because the investor wants to solve a problem. Mary was one of those people. When she visited New York City in 1092 and rode a trolley card in falling sleet. She noticed that it was really unsafe to drive in bad weather during her trip.
Because of this, she came up with a model that used a lever inside the car to control a rubber blade on the windshield. When she made this invention, she had trouble selling it. In 1922 Cadillac included her invention on the vehicles. Since then the era of safer driving in all weather began that led to modern-day wipers.
Katharine Burr Blodgett: Non-reflective Glass
Katharine was a crucial mind in World War II. Her research influence was behind several inventions, including smoke screens, gas masks and a technique for de-icing airplane wings.
The result of her most important invention, the non-reflective glass was due to her work in chemistry on a molecular level. This type of glass we use nowadays on computer screens, car shields, glasses and much more.
Dr. Shirley Jackson: Modern Day Telecommunication
Last, but not least, Shirley made history in many different ways. She was the first black woman to graduate with a PhD. from MIT in 1973.
After graduating, she began to work at Bell Laboratories. There she completed research that led to creations such as call waiting, caller ID, fiber optic cables, solar cells, touch-tone telephones, and portable fax machines.
Other women inventors who changed the world are:
- Hedy Lamarr – “Frequency Hopping” Technology
- Jeanne Villepreux-Power – French Marine Biologist, inventor of aquarium
- Joy Mangano – American entrepreneur and inventor of Miracle Mop
- Yvonne C. Brill – Canadian-American scientist, propulsion engineer, inventor of hydrazine resist jet propulsion system
- Hertha Ayrton – British engineer, mathematician, physicist and inventor of Line Divider
- Sarah Breedlove / Madam C. J. Walker – African-American entrepreneur, inventor of beauty and hair care products for black women, America’s first female self-made millionaire
- Ada Lovelace – English mathematician, writer, inventor – Computer Program
All of these women changed our lives without us knowing it. Our lives are better because of the famous, and not so famous scientists who dedicated their lives to making the future better and brighter.
Which one do you think made the biggest change in our lives? Who do you think should be added to this list?