Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Search Results

Collections Search Center
435 documents - page 1 of 22

Whirlwind Computer Collection

Creator:
Massachusetts Institute of Technology  Search this
Collector:
Mathematics, Division of (NMAH, Smithsonian Institution).  Search this
Mathematics, Division of (NMAH, Smithsonian Institution).  Search this
Names:
"MITRE Matrix"  Search this
MITRE Corporation  Search this
Everett, Robert R.  Search this
Extent:
10.3 Cubic feet (Includes 31 vertical boxes)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Reports
Papers
Date:
1945-1959
Scope and Contents:
This collection consists of over 2,516 items, housed in 31 document boxes. The material is arranged into chronological order and covers the project dates of l945- l959. The items were originally classified Secret, Confidential, and Unclassified.

The collection is arranged into four series: Series 1, Summary Reports; Series 2, Bi-weekly Reports; Series 3, Correspondence, Memoranda, and Reports; and Series 4, Indexes. The summary reports include originals of "Summary Report #1, April, 1946" and "Summary Report #2," in twenty-two volumes, and photocopies of summary reports #3 through #40. The bi-weekly reports, covering the period December, l947 to May, l953, are arranged chronologically. The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence, notes, memos, and reports. These date from August, 1945 to January, 1959 and are arranged chronologically. A 210 page index to the reports and correspondence (prepared by Whirlwind project personnel) is located in box 31. This guide has a table of contents and lists topic, author, date, and identification number for all items in the collection. Other indexes are located in boxes 30 and 31.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into four series.

Series 1: Summary Reports, 1946-1954

Series 2: Bi-weekly Reports, 1947-1953

Series 3: Correspondence, Memoranda, and Reports, 1945-1959

Series 4: Indices, undated
Biographical / Historical:
Project Whirlwind was sponsored by the Special Devices Center of the Office of Naval Research from 1945 to 1952. The original objective of the project was the development of a device that would simulate airplanes in flight. As the project progressed, other applications of the computer evolved.

The project was centered in the Servomechanisms Laboratory of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.). In the course of the research, Whirlwind evolved from an aircraft simulator into a high speed digital computer and finally into a key element of the United States' early air defense system. In 1948, M.I.T., believing that it was inappropriate for an educational institution to be so heavily involved in air defense research, transferred Whirlwind responsibility to the new M.I.T. Lincoln Laboratory in 1952. There, under the direction of Jay Forrester, pioneering work was done on magnetic core memory. MITRE's Whirlwind group spun off from Lincoln Laboratory to the new MITRE Corporation in 1958. Whirlwind served SAGE (Semiautomatic Ground Environment) air defense activities until being retired in May of 1959.

Whirlwind I was of the high-speed electronic digital type, in which quantities were represented as discrete numbers, and complex problems were solved by the repeated use of fundamental arithmetic and logical operations. Computations were executed by fractional microsecond pulses in electronic circuits, of which the principal ones were the flip-flop, the gate coincidence circuit and the magnetic core memory. Whirlwind I used numbers of 16 binary digits; this length was selected to limit the machine to a practical size.

The Whirlwind I Computer was utilized by such projects as Navy Fire Control, Air Traffic Control, the Cape Cod System, Experimental SAGE Sector, and many others. Whirlwind I spawned two computers, the MTC (memory test computer) and TX O (transistor computer), both developed by ESS Installation Group 63.

The Whirlwind I Computer and its facilities were later leased to the Wolf Research and Development Corporation, West Concord, Massachusetts, under Navy Lease Contract Nonr 2956(00) in 1963. Kent C. Redmond and Thomas M. Smith wrote a history of the project, Project Whirlwind: Case History (Bedford, Massachusetts: The MITRE Corporation, l975).
Provenance:
This collection was donated by the MITRE Corporation, February 1983. The Whirlwind I Computer Project originated at the Servomechanics Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) in 1945. The records were transferred in l959 to the MITRE Corporation.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research use.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
Computer science  Search this
Aerospace engineering  Search this
Flight Simulation  Search this
Airplanes  Search this
Computers  Search this
Genre/Form:
Reports
Papers
Citation:
Whirlwind Computer Collection, 1945-1959, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0290
See more items in:
Whirlwind Computer Collection
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0290

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Air Defense Command; 32
ID Number:
AF.85313M [dup1]
Catalog number:
85313M
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-bcf6-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_389522

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 1 1/4 in x 1 in x 1/2 in; 3.175 cm x 2.54 cm x 1.27 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Artillery; Air Defense, 111
Credit Line:
Department of Defense. Department of the Army. The Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.81843M
Catalog number:
81843M
1977.0676.04
Accession number:
1977.0676
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-a7bc-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_384639

insignia

Physical Description:
cloth (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 6 3/4 in x 3 3/4 in x 1/8 in; 17.145 cm x 9.525 cm x .3175 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Shoulder Sleeve; Artillery; Air Defense 31
ID Number:
AF.79643M
Catalog number:
79643M
Accession number:
323561
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746ad-ccf6-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_391676
Online Media:

insignia

Physical Description:
cloth (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 6 3/4 in x 3 3/4 in x 1/8 in; 17.145 cm x 9.525 cm x .3175 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Shoulder Sleeve; Artillery; Air Defense 31
ID Number:
AF.79644M
Catalog number:
79644M
Accession number:
323561
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-cd4e-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_391677
Online Media:

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 1 1/2 in x 1 in x 1/2 in; 3.81 cm x 2.54 cm x 1.27 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Artillery; Grp 164, Air Defense
Credit Line:
Department of Defense. Department of the Army. Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.75164M
Catalog number:
75164M
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-a2b5-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_384194

insignia, pair of

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 3 1/2 in x 2 1/2 in x 1/2 in; 8.89 cm x 6.35 cm x 1.27 cm
Object Name:
Insignia, Pair of
Other Terms:
Insignia, Pair of; Army; Distinctive; Artillery; Air Defense, 7
Credit Line:
Department of the Army, Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.75487M
Catalog number:
75487M
Accession number:
297041
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-adb3-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_384532

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 3 1/2 in x 2 1/2 in x 1/2 in; 8.89 cm x 6.35 cm x 1.27 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Artillery; Air Defense, 4
Credit Line:
Department of the Army, Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.75485M
Catalog number:
75485M
Accession number:
297041
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-aa83-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_384542

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 3 1/2 in x 2 1/2 in x 1/2 in; 8.89 cm x 6.35 cm x 1.27 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Artillery; Air Defense, 2
Credit Line:
Department of the Army, Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.75484M
Catalog number:
75484M
Accession number:
297041
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-aa89-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_384550

insignia, pair of

Physical Description:
cloth (?? material)
Measurements:
overall (as stored): 4 in x 3 in x 3/16 in; 10.16 cm x 7.62 cm x .508 cm
Object Name:
Insignia, Pair of
Other Terms:
Insignia, Pair of; Army; Collar; Artillery; Air Defense; Officer
Credit Line:
Daniel Power Stanton, Jr.
ID Number:
AF.75114M
Catalog number:
75114M
Accession number:
294120
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-bb14-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_385154

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall (as stored): 4 in x 3 in x 3/16 in; 10.16 cm x 7.62 cm x .508 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Collar; Artillery; 17; Air Defense; Officer
ID Number:
AF.75112M
Catalog number:
75112M
Accession number:
294120
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746ae-1925-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_385156

insignia, pair of

Physical Description:
metal (?? material)
Measurements:
overall (as stored): 4 in x 3 in x 3/16 in; 10.16 cm x 7.62 cm x .508 cm
Object Name:
Insignia, Pair of
Other Terms:
Insignia, Pair of; Army; Collar; Artillery; Air Defense; Officer
Credit Line:
Daniel Power Stanton, Jr.
ID Number:
AF.75113M
Catalog number:
75113M
Accession number:
294120
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-bb15-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_385157

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 1 1/2 in x 1 1/2 in x 1/2 in; 3.81 cm x 3.81 cm x 1.27 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Command, Air Defense 1
Associated date:
1971
ID Number:
AF.75459M
Catalog number:
75459M
Accession number:
297041
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746ad-ba35-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_389713

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 1 1/2 in x 1 in x 1/2 in; 3.81 cm x 2.54 cm x 1.27 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Command, Air Defense 3
Associated date:
1971
Credit Line:
Department of the Army, Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.75460M
Catalog number:
75460M
Accession number:
297041
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-caee-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_389714

insignia

Physical Description:
cloth (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 6 3/4 in x 3 3/4 in x 1/8 in; 17.145 cm x 9.525 cm x .3175 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Shoulder Sleeve; Artillery; Bgde 111, Air Defense
Credit Line:
US Department of Defense, Department of the Army, Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.77828M
Catalog number:
77828M
314467.015
Accession number:
314467
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746b3-58ee-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_391722
Online Media:

insignia

Physical Description:
metallic (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 3 1/2 in x 2 1/2 in x 1/4 in; 8.89 cm x 6.35 cm x .635 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Distinctive; Air Defense School
ID Number:
AF.71368M
Catalog number:
71368M
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-a78e-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_383086

insignia

Physical Description:
cloth (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 7 in x 4 in x 1/8 in; 17.78 cm x 10.16 cm x .3175 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Unit Insignia; Wing 4683, Air Defense
Credit Line:
Staff Sergeant Robert E. Carter, USAF
ID Number:
AF.71572M
Catalog number:
71572M
Accession number:
280749
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-aa95-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_383755
Online Media:

insignia

Physical Description:
cloth (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 7 in x 4 in x 1/8 in; 17.78 cm x 10.16 cm x .3175 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Unit; Cmd, Air Defense
Credit Line:
Staff Sergeant Robert E. Carter, USAF
ID Number:
AF.71553M
Catalog number:
71553M
Accession number:
280749
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a1-b0e0-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_384833
Online Media:

insignia

Physical Description:
cloth (overall material)
Measurements:
overall, bag: 7 1/4 in x 5 1/2 in x 1/8 in; 18.415 cm x 13.97 cm x .3175 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Unit; Fighter; Grp 327, Air Defense
ID Number:
AF.71823M
Catalog number:
71823M
Accession number:
280749
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746ad-af50-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_385009
Online Media:

insignia

Physical Description:
metal (overall material)
Measurements:
overall (as stored): 4 in x 3 in x 3/16 in; 10.16 cm x 7.62 cm x .508 cm
Object Name:
Insignia
Other Terms:
Insignia; Army; Collar; Artillery; Air Defense; Enlisted Man
Credit Line:
Institute of Heraldry
ID Number:
AF.72247M
Catalog number:
72247M
Accession number:
283646
See more items in:
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746b3-2166-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmah_385152

Modify Your Search







or


Narrow By