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Operations Research and the United States Army: A 75th Anniversary Perspective

January 5, 2015

As the Battle of Britain loomed early in World War II, in an occupied manor renamed Bawdsey Research Station on Suffolk’s southeastern coast, a new profession was being invented. At the time, the British term coined to define this system of teams supporting Air Chief Marshall Hugh Dowding and his Royal Air Force (RAF) Fighter Command with the integration and use of newly-invented radar was “operational research” (OR). The fate of western civilization was at stake, prompting Prime Minister Winston Churchill to describe this period after the fall of France as Britain’s “darkest hour.”2