EDSAC electronics racks in place


We've made tremendous progress over the last two weeks of February. All 12 of the tall metal racks which will support the individual chassis of electronics have now been manufactured and installed in their final positions in the new gallery. Each rack can hold up to 14 chassis.

We expect that the final number of chassis required will be just over 140. A total of 30 have already been installed in their final rack positions, having been successfully tested standalone. Much more sophisticated testing will be needed as we begin to connect each chassis to its neighbours

We expect to sign off the designs of another 10-12 chassis in the next few days. The metalwork will take 2-3 weeks to complete, and then each chassis has to be painstakingly assembled, wired and tested by volunteers working in their workshops, sheds and even at their kitchen tables. It takes a skilled volunteer at least three full days to mechanically assemble and wire a typical chassis. That's somewhere between one and two person-years just to assemble all the chassis.

Apart from steadily designing, checking, manufacturing and assembling more chassis, our next major activity over the coming few months will be the installation of the EDSAC reconstruction's power supplies, and the wiring and installing of a power distribution system inside each rack. This will be built to modern safety standards, and will provide each chassis position on each rack with two individually fused connectors which will allow any chassis to be easily installed, removed and re-installed.

If you visit TNMOC now, you will now get a strong impression of what the finished replica will look like towards the end of 2015 - but it will be some time before you experience the fully 11kW of heat that it will produce when it is running!

But... it all looks too shiny and new - perhaps we need to find a way to 'distress' it?