Ted Maiman and the birth of the Laser

SPIE Classics celebrates the birth of the laser -- 57 years ago this month.

16 May 2017

Related content:

Video: Theodore Maiman on the first laser

In this 1983 video, Ted Maiman recalls the birth of the laser in his lab. Maiman's laser, based on a synthetic ruby crystal grown by Dr. Ralph L. Hutcheson, was first operated on 16 May 1960 at Hughes Research Laboratories in Malibu, California.

Inventing the light fantastic: Ted Maiman and the world's first laser

To honor the fortieth anniversary of Maiman's historic invention, SPIE's Executive Director Eugene Arthurs spoke with Maiman to hear first-hand the story of how the scientist succeeded in winning the laser race. This article is based on that conversation.

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