Latest Charles Hard Townes Stories

2010-05-15 08:10:00

Fifty years ago Sunday, a man named Theodore Maiman built the first working laser. The Hughes Labs researcher built something that colleagues at a number of other companies and institutions had been feverishly trying to do for months, even years. Hughes Lab veteran and current Raytheon optics and lasers senior principal physicist, Daniel Nieuwsma, said many people were working with radar and were looking for ways to boost their power. One attempted method was using masers, or microwave...

2010-01-25 15:45:10

What would life be like without the laser? No DVDs, no precision laser surgery, no high-speed optical communication, no laser light shows over the pyramids at Giza. We have a lot for which to thank Charles Townes, UC Berkeley professor emeritus of physics and 1964 Nobel Laureate in physics. Fifty years ago, the first working laser was built to Townes's specifications, launching the fields of quantum electronics and photonics. In appreciation of the laser, and of Townes' role in stimulating...

2009-06-10 10:10:00

A study released on Tuesday showed that a massive bright reddish star in the Orion constellation has mysteriously shrunk by over 15 percent in the last 15 years and astronomers have not yet determined the cause, AFP reported. The supergiant star Betelgeuse, which is among the eight brightest stars in our sky, is so large that it would reach to Jupiter's orbit in our solar system. But the star has shrunk at a radius of about five astronomical units in size since 1993 by a distance equivalent...

Word of the Day
  • Nautical, the visiting and carousing of sailors in the Greenland ships.
This word is apparently from a confusion of two similar Dutch words: 'mallemerok,' a foolish woman, and 'mallemok,' a name for some persons among the crew of a whaling vessel.