Feeds

Bletchley Park fires up Big Green-Eyed Monster

Vintage air traffic computer lands at National Museum of Computing

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

The National Museum of Computing (TNMOC) has announced the revitalisation of two PDP11-based radar stations which, as part of the IRIS investigative radar recording system, for 25 years helped control the UK's airspace from "without a single incident ever being attributed to an Air Traffic Control failing".

TNMOC Trustee and Director Kevin Murrell and TNMOC volunteer Tony Frazer operating a PDP11 radar station computer

With the transfer of ATC operations from West Drayton to Swanwick, the last of the veteran system's radar stations was taken offline earlier this year, and TNMOC secured a pair of them for posterity.

TNMOC director and trustee Kevin Murrell explained: “We first saw the IRIS working at West Drayton in 2001 and we immediately knew that we wanted the decommissioned technology as a working exhibit in the museum.

"IRIS finally came out of service in early 2008 and it’s been a major task to rebuild it, but volunteers Ben Trethowan and Peter Vaughan have succeeded in sparking it into life. The final trick was to replace some wiring that had become faulty.

"The reconstruction feat is truly outstanding because these are highly complex systems that were originally put together by experts trained in the intricacies of the technology."

The two radar displays are known as the Big Green-Eyed Monster (see pic, above) "because of their size and remarkable retro appearance". They can now be enjoyed "replaying historical recordings of flights in and out of London's Heathrow Airport". ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
Archaeologists and robots on hunt for more Antikythera pieces
How much of the world's oldest computer can they find?
Who wants to be there as history is made at the launch of our LOHAN space project?
Two places available in the chase plane above the desert
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.