reply to post by hiii_98
You FOIA the radar and I assume the sooner the better. Note with some FOIA requests, the data is returned online rather than direct mailing. Basically
the organization doesn't want to bother burning a CD and mailing it.
Here is a radar FOIA example:
Now I used to know how to decode these. The three letter code is for the radar site. Sometimes it is at an airport, other times it refers to a remote
radar site. [There are holes in radar coverage.] I'd say get the radar report. I know someone who knows how to decode radar report. The request
should be a search defined as either a central point and radius or a box of latitude and longitude. The box should be northling, eastling, etc. In
English, that just means (X1, Y1) (X1,Y2), (X2, Y1), and (X2,Y2).
Oh yeah, you can FOIA people who FOIA. Sometimes the names and addresses of FOIA requests show up online too. Be prepared to get in a government
Now some air traffic is logged on commercial websites. I maintain a list of such sites here:
Unfortunately, these websites usually cover urban areas. So a FOIA to the USAF is the way to go. Having never done one of these myself for radar, I
don't know the direct office. You can try to locate this yourself, or just FOIA the top level of the USAF and let them pass your request around. This
is the main link:
You need to tell them how much you want to spend. I think a radar search should be free. It is not like the data sits on microfiche in some hell hole.
Someone does some computer magic to make the file, then they upload it.
Now your problem is what happens if they report no radar returns. Just who is the liar? Witness. USAF? Inconclusive?
It is my opinion that eyewitness testimony is only useful to know where to search for physical evidence. Eyewitness testimony is notoriously
Come to think of it, the data comes from the FAA, but I've only seen these reports from the USAF. Maybe all radar requests go through the USAF so
they can sanitize test aircraft flights. I'm sure if you asked for radar data over 60kft, you would get a reply that nothing is found, even though we
know U2 flights are routinely flying that high.