Resources

The Resources section provides links to other organizations’ archives and items of historical interest.

Historical Archives
History of the Laser
Photos and Images  

Historical Archives

American Institute of Physic’s (AIP) Center for History of Physics The AIP Center for History of Physics works to preserve and make known the historical record of modern physics and allied sciences. Through documentation, archival collections and educational initiatives, the Center ensures that the heritage of modern physics is safeguarded and its story accurately told. American Physical Society
APS features Months in Physics History. Each year, from 2000-2011, APS includes links to further explore the history of physics from the late 1600's and beyond.

Bell System Technical Journal
The scientific discoveries and technological innovations produced by Bell System research and engineering were critical not only to the evolution of global telecommunications but, more widely, they had a considerable impact on the technological base of the global economy and on our daily lives. Bell System Technical Journals discuss what Bell Labs innovated and describes the world technical integration of the innovations. The Bell System Technical Journal from volume 1 issue 1 in July 1922 to the final issue published in December 1983 opens the vault of such knowledge.

IEEE History Center
IEEE’s History Center is dedicated to preserving and promoting the history of innovation in the fields of electrical engineering and its allied fields. This site includes an interactive maps and timelines as well as articles, oral histories, and archives.

Online Archive of California (OAC)
OAC provides free public access to detailed descriptions of primary resource collections maintained by more than 150 contributing institutions including libraries, special collections, archives, historical societies, and museums throughout California and collections maintained by the 10 University of California (UC) campuses.

Stanford Historical Society's Oral History Program
Stanford Historical Society’s Oral History explores the institutional history of the University, with an emphasis on the transformative post-WWII period, through interviews with leading faculty, staff, alumni, trustees, and others. The project furthers the Society's mission "to foster and support the documentation, study, publication, and preservation of the history of the Leland Stanford Junior University." The interview recordings and transcripts provide valuable additions to the existing collection of written and photographic materials in the Stanford University Archives.

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History of the Laser

Bell Labs

Charles H. Townes Article
The article, The First Laser, by Charles Townes from A Century of Nature: Twenty One Discoveries that Changed Science and the World.

Charles H. Townes Interview
The interview, A Life in Physics: Bell Telephone Laboratories and World War II; Columbia University and the Laser; MIT and Government Service; California and Research in Astrophysics. This 515-page interview with Charles Townes is full of historical riches.

Greatest Engineering Achievements
Greatest Engineering Achievements by National Academy of Engineering provides a historical timeline of lasers and fiber optics from 1917 to 1997.

Longview Institute
Longview Institute seeks to articulate and promote a vision of our nation based on a moral economy and a just society. The institute believes in individual liberty, accompanied by collective responsibility, deeply rooted in the highest ideals of the American progressive tradition. The institute provides a comprehensive description of the invention of the laser.

Longview's project on Market Fundamentalism is intended as a resource to explain what Market Fundamentalism is, examine its impact on politics and policy, and provide powerful critiques of its key arguments. As part of this project, the Longview Institute discusses the invention of the laser.

LaserFest
LaserFest was a yearlong celebration of the 50th anniversary of the laser, which was first demonstrated in 1960, and is a collaborative effort between the American Physical Society, the Optical Society, SPIE and IEEE Photonics Society. From DVD players to eye surgery, the laser is one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century—one that has revolutionized the way we live.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS)
This PNAS abstract Optical Trapping and Manipulation of Neutral Particles Using Lasers was written by Arthur Ashkin in 1997.

SPIE Laser Historian Presentation
This SPIE presentation includes photos and descriptions of scientists who contributed significantly to the history of the laser for the past 50 years.

Wikipedia
Wikipedia’s detailed description of the laser including terminology, design, laser physics, continuous and pulsed modes of operation, history, types and operating principles, uses, and safety.

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Photos and Images

Emilio Segre Visual Archives
AIP’s collection of more than 30,000 historical digital images, photographs, slides, lithographs, engravings, drawings and other visual materials.

The Laser Equipment Gallery
The Laser Equipment Gallery (LEG) is a collection of pages which provides thumbnails and links to full size photos of a variety of specific pieces of laser equipment including interior and exterior views and close-ups. There are photos of various laser systems, power supplies, and components.

University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences Antique and Historic Optics
The University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences Antique and Historic Optics offers access to its collection of antique and historic telescopes, microscopes, lenses and cameras. These specimens represent work by the world's most respected instrument makers from the 18th century to the present. This online gallery is an ongoing project and about 75 percent of the total collection has been photographed and catalogued.

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