Mrs. Stacie Rios » STEM History Mystery

STEM History Mystery

Click the following link to give your answer each week. A random winner will be selected for each grade level. Happy searching!
November 27

I was the first service engineer for a rail company (trains). In that role, I created partially reclining seats, larger changing rooms, and stain-resistant upholstery. These revolutionary ideas were soon taken up by bus companies and airlines to keep passengers happy.


Who am I?

October 30

This person is considered the first computer programmer. As a mathematician, this person was the first to create an algorithm for the Analytical Engine. Looking forward, this scientist and writer saw the potential of computing, especially in helping weave intricate patterns on looms.


Who am I?

Ada Lovelace


October 16

After receiving a doctorate in mathematics, I focused on instructing teachers in modern math techniques. Recognizing the importance of computers, I wrote a grant to IBM to bring a computer to the college campus - one of the first. I also supported gifted students to help them succeed. This was honored after my death with a scholarship created in my name.


Who am I?


Marjorie Lee Browne
October 9
I am an Indian-American astrophysicist who shed light on the structure and evolution of stars. My contributions included using math to model black holes while also exploring the theory of colliding gravitational waves. These contributions earned me the Nobel Prize in Physics.
Who am I?

Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar

October 2

As a food chemist, I revolutionized food preservation and sanitizing. I used a process called flash-drying to make sure that sodium chloride, nitrates, and nitrites were able to properly preserve meat. I also found a gas called ethylene oxide that could be introduced to food in a vacuum and kill bacteria. In time, I improved health and safety of preserved foods and won many accolades and awards.


Who am I?

Lloyd Hall

September 25
I was an experimental physicist who made many contributions to nuclear physics during my life. I worked on the Manhattan Project, separating uranium isotopes using gaseous diffusion. I even conducted an experiment, now named after me, to look at a hypothetical law. I was nicknamed the "First Lady of Physics."
Who am I?
Chien-Shiung Wu
September 18
I was a seismologist and geophysicist. During my career, I studied seismic waves and determined that Earth has a solid inner core surrounded by a molten outer core. This went against all of my colleagues at the time. I received many honors during my life and even had an asteroid and a species of arthropod named after me. I lived to be 104 years old.
Who am I?
Inge Lehmann
September 11
I am a physicist and inventor who was born in 1940. I received a scholarship to Occidental College in Los Angeles and received my degree in physics. I did this while playing football and basketball. I received my Master of Science in Nuclear Physics in 1963 from Harvard University in only nine months! I worked on computer analysis of launch trajectories for many projects, and I worked for both IBM (computer company) and NASA.
Who am I?
George Edward Alcorn, Jr.
September 5th
This astronomer's first discovery was of a yet undetected nebula. Upon finding that the current catalog was not helpful, this scientist created a new catalog to note observations while "minding the heavens." In addition, this astronomer identified two new comets that were included in Philosophical Transactions. The scientist was honored by the King of Prussia and the Royal Astronomical Society.
Who am I? 
Caroline Herschel