Flora is an Aerospace Engineer who worked for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in Houston, Texas from 1963 to 2006. She graduated from the University of Arkansas with a BS in Mathematics and Physics. Her post graduate studies in Astrodynamics and Celestial Mechanics were pursued through programs at UCLA, MIT and University of Michigan.
Flora began her NASA career in Guidance and Control, then moved to the Mission Planning and Analysis Division in support of the Apollo Team and future missions. Her last assignment was in Mission Operations Directorate in support of Real Time Operations.
Her career focus was on navigation systems design, trajectory determination development, operational support and supervisory and management for the Space Programs. Although she is primarily known for her activities within the Space Shuttle Program, Flora’s work at NASA contributed to the success of the Apollo, Apollo-Soyuz, Shuttle and Space Station programs.
She was a pioneer in her field at the age of 21, where she was on the ground floor of the development of the U.S. Manned Space program. As a woman in a highly technical field, she was a forerunner in the furthering of women in the space and scientific community.
Flora was an analyst planning missions, creating navigational techniques that were investigated and applied to program applications, software programs and Mission Control Center development. Flora authored and co-authored numerous papers and articles on these navigational studies and space applications, appearing in such publications like the Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, Automatica, as well as being presented at the Control and Flight Dynamics Conference.
Flora Byars Lowes-Calaway, Sam Houston Chapter Member, former Regent, and a member of Today's DAR.