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Stephanie Kwolek, Kevlar inventor, dies at 90

By Kyle Johnson,

Stephanie Kwolek, who invented Kevlar while working as a chemist for DuPont, passed away on Wednesday at the age of 90.

Her death was confirmed by her co-workers with ABC News and CEO Ellen Kullman said in a statement, "She leaves a wonderful legacy of thousands of lives saved and countless injuries prevented by products made possible by her discovery."

DuPont said that the one millionth Kevlar vest was sold this week and after Kwolek created the technology back in 1965, it has since also been used to make various sporting products "lighter, stronger and safer." It has also been used in tires, cellphones and other products on the market today.

Kwolek devised the super-strong substance after trying to create fibers that could be used to strengthen tires. She came up with a liquid crystal solution that after it was cold-spun was stronger than steel.

According to The Delaware News Journal, Kwolek passed away after suffering from an illness and she left behind no family.

"In those days for chemists, when you're hot on the trail of something, there's not a lot of time to go dating," her friend Rita Vasta said. "She loved outdoor sports, she had plenty of friends, she socialized. But when it came to lab work, that was 100 percent of her focus."

 
 

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