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Stephanie Kwolek, one of the first women inventors to work as a research chemist, gained national recognition in 1960 for her study of long molecule chains at low temperatures.
In 1971, Kwolek's further analysis resulted in the creation of Kevlar®, a synthetic material that is five times as strong as steel. Kevlar is resistant to wear, corrosion and flames, and it is the main ingredient in the production of bulletproof vests.
Kwolek owns 17 U.S. patents and has received a variety of prestigious awards, including the National Medal of Technology and the Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award.