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General Purpose Computer

GPC Image

The Space Shuttle is equipped with five General Purpose Computers (GPC).  These computers and their displays have been added to the simulation.  The GPCs are used during ascent, on orbit and during decent to monitor the space craft's position and energy state.  The image to the left shows a typical display.  The five computers are controlled by the GPC control panel, and each computer can be put to different tasks during orbit.  These GPCs are used to control orbital maneuvers, which causes the Orbital Maneuvering System engines (OMS) to fire. 

The image to the left is an ascent screen that is displayed during launch. The screen formats match the display formats found in the Data Processing Dictionary.  There are a total of 86 displays in the Shuttle GPC system. Sixty-five of them are simulated and 39 have real time data.

The GPC are used on orbit to point the shuttle to any one of 100 navigation stars. Environmental and electrical systems are also monitored.  The FAULT SUMM (fault summary) display shows all the more recent system faults and allow then to be acknowledged. 

logo Copyright (c) 2006 Theodore S. Kyle
Launch of STS 114, Return to Flight, July 26, 2005
Background Photo by NASA