Lasers are items that we may find commonplace but it was not all that long ago that it was not science; it was a matter of being science fiction. Laser is an acronym which stands for light amplification by the stimulation emission of radiation. It was first theorized in 1917 by Albert Einstein who thought that the process for making lasers was possible, although not everybody thought that it was going to be possible at that time. It wasn’t until 1954, however, that the first tool which was close to being a laser came into existence.
In 1954, two men by the names of Arthur Schalow and Charles Townes invented a product that was known as the maser. It was similar to a laser but instead of using light amplification, it used microwave amplification. Microwave radiation and ammonia gas were used with this particular tool and it was a tool that was in existence before the optical laser came into existence. Although they are very similar, the maser was different in the fact that no visible light was used in the product. A patent was given to those two individuals in 1959 for that product.
In 1958, those same two individuals had papers published about a similar item to the maser, although it was going to use a visible light. They did not follow through with the development of the laser at that time, however, but it was developed in 1960 and known as the Ruby laser. Gordon Gould, a student at the Columbia University is given credit by many individuals as being the developer of the actual laser and he was the first person to use the term. The helium neon laser was later developed in 1960 and this became the first laser that used continuous light in operation.
Since those early years of laser tools, there have been many developments which help to make it more practical for use in our modern society. For example, many different industries use a variety of laser tools to do jobs more accurately and quickly. An example of this is the laser measuring tools that are found in many industries. They not only allow for faster measurements, they also allow for measurements that are very accurate in comparison to the older tools that were available. This is something that should be considered, as it certainly can make a difference in how many of the products that we use are designed and developed.
We also use lasers in our day-to-day lives, including in our homes in many cases. For example, if you watch movies or listen to music on CD or DVD players, a laser is used, both in the development of those products and in the way that they are used within the home. In the medical profession, it is used in a number of ways that are to our benefit as well. For example, laser eye surgery is something that many people do to correct their vision and other forms of laser surgery are also used on a regular basis. Although changes do occur with the way the lasers are used, it certainly has enhanced our lives in many ways.
Lasers are a fascinating thing, and with the advent of new technology laser tools are becoming more and more commonplace. Now laser measuring tools are replacing measuring tape and soon laser cutters will replace bread knives. Maybe not…
(Image Credit – Bing Images )
If you found this article interesting and informative, please be sure to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter as well as daily email / RSS Feeds at SourceTech411 .