MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE CAMBRIDGE United States
Project Whirlwind at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Servomechanisms Laboratory is sponsored by the Special Devices Center of the Office of Naval Research. The Project is engaged in the study and design of simulation and control systems involving high-speed electronic digital computers. The greater part of the Project effort is at present directed toward the design of such computers. The original objective of the Project when started in December 1944 was the construction of a simulator to predict the flight characteristics of large aircraft. Electrical analogue computing equipment similar to that used in some fire-control computers was first proposed but was discarded as unsuited to a problem as complicated as the aircraft simulator. It was realized that the required capacity and sensitivity could only be obtained by the use of numerical computation methods. Equipment and techniques originally developed for radar made possible the necessary high computing speeds.