Flying under the radar

Flying under the radar – actually has some real meaning. It was once the optimum strategy for a spy plane to fly as high as possible. This was thought the best way to get ‘out of reach’ of enemy and radar. The U2 spy plane did this by flying above 85,000 feet. When one was shot down during the Cuban missile crisis some smart people decided to flip their thinking.




The solution was so obvious in hindsight. Simply fly very low where the terrain blocked radar effectiveness. Underneath the radar!


Maybe it’s time to flip your thinking to solve today’s business problem.


3 Comments Flying under the radar

  1. NathanaelB

    Not to mention that by doing so they achieved their original goal of capturing high-resolution imagery … perhaps something could be taken from that too? Aggressively pursuing the goal and looking for risk mitigation strategies that don’t comprimise that goal.

  2. Doof23

    Your metaphor should include something about continuous reassessment.

    Low fliers with terrain-following radar were hot items in the 1960s and 70s – these included the European Tornado and the F-111 (still flown by the RAAF).

    In the mid-70s, the smart minds realised that radar-controlled anti-aircraft artillery could detect the emissions of terrain-following radar well in advance of the aircraft’s arrival. Said aircraft would then be greeted by a wall of metal. This is what happened to the Tornados flown by the Brits in the first Gulf War.

    In the meantime, the Americans had perfected stealth. In the same Gulf War, the F-117s (your picture) flew at high altitude and suffered no losses while the Poms were being blown out of the sky.

Leave a Reply