IBM AP-101S general purpose computer designed for use on the Space Shuttle, measuring approximately 10″ x 7.75″ x 23.5″, with the black manufacturer's tag on the front: "Mfg. by IBM Corp. Owego NY for NASA, CII MC615-0025-3004, Contract No. NAS9-14000, Part No. 6966000-6, Model Type Preproduction, Stock No. EN66482FZ ARB, Serial No. 308, Date of Mfg. 03-04-91." The front has five ports labeled "J2," "J3," "J4," "J5," and "J7," as well as an elapsed time indicator. In very good to fine condition, with a label on top noting "Caution-Broke Connector," and the deaccession label on the side indicating an acquisition cost of $450,000. A label on the front also indicates that the NiCad batteries have been removed.
Each Space Shuttle Orbiter flew with five IBM AP-101 computers: four operated in sync for redundancy, and a fifth independently ran backup software. The original AP-101 computers used magnetic core memory, before being upgraded to semiconductor memory with the AP-101S in the early 1990s. A highly desirable, early example of this second iteration of the Space Shuttle computer.
Provenance: The Spaceflight America Museum and Science Center in Prince Frederick, MD.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.