In 1962, as NASA prepared for the orbital mission of John Glenn, Katherine Johnson was called upon to hand check the computer’s orbital equations that would control the trajectory of the capsule in John Glenn’s Friendship 7 mission, from blast off to splashdown.
“If she says they’re good,’” Katherine Johnson remembers the astronaut saying, “then I’m ready to go.” Glenn’s flight was a success, and marked a turning point in the competition between the United States and the Soviet Union in space.
NASA wishes Katherine Johnson a very Happy 100th Birthday.
To learn more about Katherine and other trailblazing ‘human computers,’ visit: https://www.nasa.gov/modernfigures
NASA Honors Space Mathematician Katherine Johnson on her 101st Birthday
NASA Administrator Kicks Off a Celebration of Katherine Johnson’s 100th Birthday
NASA Honors the 100th Anniversary of John Glenn’s Birth
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