It’s extremely difficult to imagine the modern world without lasers. They are used everywhere, in medicine, industry, electronic devices and beyond.
Laser is an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.
The creation of such devices was predicted by Albert Einstein in 1917, when he described the process of stimulated emission, the release of energy from an excited atom by artificial means.
Before scientists developed a laser, they worked on the ‘maser’ concept (Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation).
The research was done simultaneously in the USSR and in the USA. In 1952, Soviet physicists Nikolay Basov and Alexander Prokhorov described the theoretical principles for maser operation.
Later, they proposed a principle for achieving population inversion by pumping a three-level system. This technique proved to be highly effective and is now widely used in various lasers and spectral ranges.
Simultaneously, American physicist Joseph Weber described how to use stimulated emissions to make a microwave amplifier. Using this method, physicist Charles H. Townes built the first maser.
In 1964, Basov, Prokhorov and Townes shared the Nobel Prize for fundamental work in the field of quantum electronics, which has led to the construction of oscillators and amplifiers based on the maser-laser principle.
RT. com / ABC Flash Point News 2023.