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DPS (Continued)

Circa 1970, the Safeguard data processing system required throughput unattainable in any commercially available system, so special custom hardware was designed and built. Called the "Central Logic and Control" (CLC), the system was a partitionable 10-way multi-processor design that could provide throughput of 10 to 20 mips (million instructions per second).

At the time, the software development for Safeguard was the largest and most complex project of its kind ever attempted. To squeeze maximum performance out of the system, critical parts of the software were coded in CLC assembly language (called SNX: Safeguard Nike-X). A specially developed high-level programming language and compiler called CENTRAN (Central Logic and Control Translator) were also used to develop the application software.

The most intensive data processing requirements were for the MSR (Missile Site Radar) complex. In addition to operating the site's radar, the DPS battle management software had to track both threatening ICBM targets and defensive missiles, discriminate between real and false targets, and orchestrate interception and destruction of target re-entry vehicles.

The PAR (Perimeter Acquisition Radar) DPS was required to track and compute trajectory data for incoming re-entry vehicles as soon as possible after initial acquisition at the PAR's 2,000 mile range. After discriminating between real and false targets, the PAR DPS then passed preliminary trajectory data to the MSR so that it could begin the interception process even though the targets were not yet within range of its own radar.

The BMDC (Ballistic Missile Defense Center) DPS was somewhat less demanding. It provided for display and command interface/dissemination to/from other installations, including the Safeguard sites.

The primary DPS contractor was Bell Labs. Subcontractors included IBM for software development and Western Electric, Univac, and Lockheed Electronics for the DPS hardware.

For more information about the DPS, see