Stimulated Optical Radiation in Ruby: MAIMAN, Theodore H.

Stimulated Optical Radiation in Ruby

MAIMAN, Theodore H.

Published by Macmillan, 1960
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FIRST EDITION of the announcement of the first successful laser. The blueprint for the laser proposed by Townes and Schawlow in December 1958 "led several groups to try building a laser. Success came first to Theodore H. Maiman. He fired bright pulses from a photographer's flash lamp to excite chromium atoms in a crystal of synthetic ruby, a material he chose because he had studied carefully how it absorbed and emitted light and calculated that it should work as a laser. On May 16, 1960, he produced red pulses from a ruby rod about the size of a fingertip. "While lasers quickly caught the public imagination, perhaps for their similarity to the 'heat rays' of science fiction, practical applications took years to develop. A young physicist named Irnee D'Haenens, while working with Maiman on the ruby laser, joked that the device was 'a solution looking for a problem,' and the line lingered in the laser community for many years" (Britannica). Today, of course, lasers are ubiquitous, with a myriad of applications from medicine and science, to engineering and entertainment. They have become one of the essential components of the modern technological age. IN: Nature, Vol 187, no. 4736, pp. 493-4. One full issue, August 6, 1960. London: Macmillan, 1960. Quarto, modern half-morocco, bound without original wrappers. Stamp on general title, otherwise fine. Bookseller Inventory #

Bibliographic Details

Title: Stimulated Optical Radiation in Ruby
Publisher: Macmillan
Publication Date: 1960
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Fine
Edition: 1st Edition

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Maiman, T[heodore] H[arold]
Published by Harrison & Sons, London (1960)
Used First Edition Quantity Available: 1
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Atticus Rare Books
(West Branch, IA, U.S.A.)
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Book Description Harrison & Sons, London, 1960. 1st Edition. FIRST EDITION (BOUND BUT INCLUDES ORIGINAL FRONT WRAP) OF THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE FIRST WORKING LASER. "Stimulated Optical Radiation in Ruby" might be considered the most important [paper] per word of any of the wonderful papers in Nature over the past century" (Garwin, A Century of Nature, 107). Theodore Harold "Ted" Maiman's invention was based upon a synthetic ruby crystal and generated a pulsed (discontinuous) laser - the first successful laser. Today, lasers are employed everywhere and are a cornerstone of modern technology. "Among their many applications, lasers are used in optical disk drives, laser printers, and barcode scanners; fiber-optic and free-space optical communication; laser surgery and skin treatments; cutting and welding materials; military and law enforcement devices for marking targets and measuring range and speed; and laser lighting displays in entertainment" (Wikipedia). By any measure, the development of the laser was of seminal scientific import. Building upon the work of Townes, Schawlow, and even Einstein (who had introduced the concept of stimulated emission), Maiman developed his laser while working as head of the quantum electronics division at Hughes Research Lab. "Maiman's early laser used a powerful energy source to excite atoms in a synthetic ruby to higher energy levels. At a specific energy level, some atoms emitted particles of light called photons. These newly created photons struck other atoms, rapidly stimulating the emission of more identical photons and amplifying the light intensity. Maiman was able to continue this process of stimulated emission and amplification by placing a completely reflecting silver mirror on one end of the model and a partially reflecting silver mirror on the other. This setup enabled photons to bounce back and forth between the mirrors until they gained enough intensity to burst through the partially silvered end as a powerful, coherent, beam of light--what you can today find on the end of a laser pointer (Laserfest Website). CONDITION & DETAILS: London: Harrison & Sons. Complete volume inclusive, at the rear, of the original front wrap for the August 6, 1960 issue. The wrap, along with the volume as a whole, is in near fine condition. Ex-libris but bearing only a small circular stamp on the rear of the title page. 4to. 10.5 by 7.5 inches (263 x 188mm). [4], xci, [1], 534, [2 issue covers], 2. In-text illustrations throughout. Handsomely rebound in half calf , gilt-lettered at the spine; tightly and very solidly bound. Five gilt-ruled raised bands at the spine; each compartment gilt tooled. Bright and clean throughout. Near fine condition in every way. Bookseller Inventory # 564

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