Meccano differential analyser, 1947

Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation) Meccano differential analyser, 1947 (model - representation)

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Working model of a differential analyser constructed from the construction toy, Meccano, by Prof. Douglas Rayner Hartree and Arthur Porter at University of Manchester, England, 1934, and reconstructed by Prof. Douglas Rayner Hartree at University of Cambridge, England, 1947.

A differential analyser is an analogue computer designed to solve equations using a wheel and disk mechanism. This model was built using the toy Meccano over 18 months by research student Arthur Porter. Porter was working under the supervision of Professor Douglas Rayner Hartree (1897-1958), a professor of theoretical physics, who was waiting for a full-size analyser to be built. Although it needed setting and operating by hand, the machine was able to solve difficult equations.

Details

Category:
Mathematics
Object Number:
1949-134
Materials:
wood (unidentified), meccano and metal (unknown)
Measurements:
overall: 120 mm x 300 mm x 1500 mm, 8.14 kg
type:
model - representation
credit:
Donated by Richard Hartree

Parts

Meccano differential analyser, 1947

Main part of a working model of a differential analyser constructed from the construction toy, Meccano, made by Professor Douglas Hartree and Arthur Porter at University of Manchester, England, 1934. Reconstructed by Prof. Douglas Hartree at University of Cambridge, England, 1947

More

Main part of a working model of a differential analyser constructed from the construction toy, Meccano, by Prof. Douglas Hartree and Arthur Porter at University of Manchester, England, 1934, and reconstructed by Prof. Douglas Hartree at University of Cambridge, England, 1947.

A differential analyser is an analogue computer designed to solve equations using a wheel and disk mechanism. This model was built using the toy Meccano over 18 months by research student Arthur Porter. Porter was working under the supervision of Professor Douglas Rayner Hartree (1897-1958), a professor of theoretical physics, who was waiting for a full-size analyser to be built. Although it needed setting and operating by hand, the machine was able to solve difficult equations.

Measurements:
overall: 160 mm x 1390 mm x 360 mm, 8.14 kg
Materials:
brass (copper, zinc alloy) , copper (alloy) , steel (metal) , metal (unknown) , textile , mahogany (wood) , wood composites (plywood-unknown) , wood composites (birch plywood) and varnish
Object Number:
1949-134 Pt1
type:
model - representation
Image ©
The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum
Part of a working model of a Meccano differential analyser, 1947

Part of a working model of a Meccano differential analyser, 1947

Part of a working model of a differential analyser constructed from the construction toy, Meccano, by Prof. Douglas Rayner Hartree and Arthur Porter at University of Manchester, England, 1934, and reconstructed by Prof. Douglas Rayner Hartree at University of Cambridge, England, 1947

Object Number:
1949-134 Pt2
type:
model - representation