The Invention of Lasers
THE LASER was not the result of one INDIVIDUAL'S EFFORTS, BUT THE COMBINATION OF MANY LEADING OPTICS AND PHOTONICS SCIENTISTS AND ENGINEERS OVER THE COURSE OF HISTORY.
The laser's history can be traced back to 1900, when Max Planck published his work on the law of radiation, His theory marked a turning point in physics and inspired Albert Einstein, who in 1905 released a paper on the photoelectric effect- which proposed that light also delivers its energy in chunks, now called photons.
Einstein theorized that, besides absorbing and emitting light spontaneously electrons could be stimulated to emit light of a particular wavelength.
Charles Townes at Columbia University
In the 1950's scientists began work focused on harnessing energy by utilizing the principal of stimulated emission; most notable were scientists Charles Townes at Columbia University, and Alexander Prokhorov and Nikolai Basov at the Lebedev Laboratories in Moscow Alexander Prokhorov Nikolai Basov
Townes began working with Arthur Schawlow at Bell Labs where they developed a concept called an "optical maser", which Townes documented in his lab notebook in September 1957.
SION LIN In March 1960, Townes and Schawlow, at Bell Labs, were granted a patent for the optical maser, which today is called a laser.