Milestone-Nomination:Apollo Guidance Computer (AGC)

Revision as of 20:04, 5 December 2010 by Ggcooke (talk | contribs)

Docket Number: 2010-02

Proposal Link:

In the space below the line, please enter your proposed citation in English, with title and text. Text absolutely limited to 70 words; 60 is preferable for aesthetic reasons. NOTE: The IEEE History Committee shall have final determination on the wording of the citation

The Apollo Guidance Computer (AGC) was an on-board digital computer installed in each Apollo program spacecraft.  It provided onboard computation to support spacecraft guidance, navigation and control. The AGC was the first embedded system, used in real-time by astronaut pilots, to provide flight information and to automatically control navigational functions of the  spacecraft. It was developed during the 1960s under the leadership of Charles Stark Draper at MIT Instrumentation Laboratory. 70 words

Please also include references and full citations, and include supporting material in an electronic format (GIF, JPEG, PNG, PDF, DOC) which can be made available on the IEEE History Center’s Web site to historians, scholars, students, and interested members of the public. All supporting materials must be in English, or if not in English, accompanied by an English translation. If you are including images or photographs as part of the supporting material, it is necessary that you list the copyright owner.

In the space below the line, please describe the historic significance of this work: its importance to the evolution of electrical and computer engineering and science and its importance to regional/national/international development.

AGC  and the associated guidance, navigation and control system components made possible the lunar rendezvous mode trajectory used by the Apollo Program to put the first human beings on the moon and return them safely to earth.


1. Wikipedia, Apollo Guidance Computer,

3. John Tylko, MIT and Navigating the Path to the Moon: AeroAstro  Magazine Highlights, 2009 MIT

4. David A. Mindell, Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in Spaceflight

What features or characteristics set this work apart from similar achievements?

Please attach a letter in English, or with English translation, from the site owner giving permission to place IEEE milestone plaque on the property.

The letter is necessary in order to process your nomination form. Click the Attachments tab to upload your letter.