Laser information page

    General information

    The 'laser' - or - (light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation) was perfected in 1960, by research scientist Theodore Maiman at the Hughes Laboratory in Malibu California. Physicists Charles H. Townes and his brother-in-law Arthur Schawlow were the first to actually apply for a patent on the laser and they were the first to publish their findings in scientific journals. The He-Ne laser (red beam) was in commercial use, by 1968. Today many different types of lasers exist, for a wide range of applications. Lasers are used for surgery, for cutting metal, for determining distance, for projecting 3-dimensional holographic images, for computer printing and for entertainment lighting applications. Laser light differs from ordinary light in four ways. Briefly it is much more intense, directional, monochromatic and coherent. Most lasers consist of a column of active material with a partly reflecting mirror at one end and a fully reflecting mirror at the other. The active material can be solid (ruby crystal), liquid or gas (HeNe, CO2 etc.).

    Laser components in Finland


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