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Thursday, 1 March 2018

Amazing Facts About Kalpana Chawla

14 Amazing Facts About Kalpana Chawla

The tragic loss of the space shuttle Columbia killed seven astronauts. One of those, Kalpana Chawla, was the first Indian-born woman in space.


Born in Karnal, India, on July 1, 1961, Chawla was the youngest of four children. The name Kalpana means "idea" or "imagination." Her full name is pronounced CULL-puh-na CHAV-la, though she often went by the nickname K.C.



When she broke the shackles of male-dominant society!

Being raised in a society where boys are favored, and girls expected to be obedient and docile, Kalpana decided to beat the odds and follow her dreams with the support of her mother.

Always the first-five!



She did her schoolings from Tagore Baal Niketan Senior Secondary School, Karnal, Haryana, India and completed her B.Tech in Aeronautical Engineering from Punjab Engineering College at Chandigarh, India in 1982. Although she never scored the highest marks in her class, was always among the first five.

A Journey from India to the US!



To fulfill her desire of becoming an astronaut, she aimed at joining the NASA and moved to the United States in 1982. She obtained a Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1984.

Love in the air!

She got married to Jean-Pierre Harrison in 1983, who was a flying instructor and an aviation author.

A creative astronaut!

Kalpana liked poetry, dancing, cycling and running. She also used to take part at sports events and was invariably first in all the races. She often played badminton and dodge ball with boys.

Followed her dream with utmost perseverance!

To be an astronaut she decided to have higher education. In 1986, she attained another master degree. In 1988, she completed a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

When NASA paid her efforts!

She got the position of Vice President of Overset Methods, Inc at NASA  Research Center

A diligent astronaut!



After being the vice president at NASA, she was assigned to make Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) research on Vertical/Short Takeoff and Landing concepts.

A Certified Flight Instructor!

She was certified as a commercial pilot license for the seaplanes, multi-engine aircraft, and glider. She was also a Certificated Flight Instructor for glider and airplanes.

The tragic death!




On February 1, 2003, along with 7 crew members, she died in the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster which happened when the Space Shuttle disintegrated over Texas during re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere.

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