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George A. Philbrick and Polyphemus: The First Electronic Training Simulator
April-June 1982 (vol. 4 no. 2)
pp. 143-156

In 1937-1938 George A. Philbrick developed what he called an "Automatic Control Analyzer." The analyzer was an electronic analog computer, hard-wired to carry out a computation, or simulation, of a typical process- control loop. The analyzer consisted of several vacuum-tube amplifier stages interconnected to simulate a three-term PID controller operating on a four-lag process, with a number of switches and potentiometers provided for easy variations in the circuit configurations and parameter values. The whole assembly was battery operated and mounted in a standard rack. It contained a built-in oscilloscope: a Dumont 5-inch oscillograph, Type 208, which was one of the early CRT devices on the industrial market. Philbrick named the single-screen analog computer "Polyphemus, " after the one-eyed Cyclops who, according to Greek mythology, was blinded by Odysseus.

Citation:
Per A. Holst, "George A. Philbrick and Polyphemus: The First Electronic Training Simulator," IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 143-156, April-June 1982, doi:10.1109/MAHC.1982.10021
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