This is a model of one internal component of the SINS (Ships Inertial Navigation System) Mark IV developed in the early 1950s by Dr. Charles Stark Draper. Inertial navigation systems use gyroscopes and other instruments to feed information into a computer, which calculates the degree of drift from the intended course and recommends any needed corrections. Dr. Draper, founder of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Instrumentation Laboratory, was known as the "father of inertial navigation." He started working on the theory and technology of these systems in the 1930s, and through the decades his work led directly to their development and use in U.S. aircraft, rockets, missiles, ships, and manned and unmanned spacecraft.
The Draper Instrumentation Laboratory made the model and Dr. Draper donated it to the Museum in 1974.
Gift of Dr. Charles S. Draper