Townes experimented with microwaves in the late 1940s, and in 1951 he created a device that could generate and amplify these microwaves. Based on Einstein’s theory, Townes dubbed his discovery “Maser” - an acronym for “microwave amplification by stimulated emission of radiation”. What was feasible with microwaves, i.e. the amplification by stimulated emission of radiation, should also be achievable for infrared or conventional light, knowing that with a decrease in wavelength, the cost of constructing a laser greatly increases.
However, it was several years before a “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation,” or laser, was erected from this theory. The material needed to construct a laser was known and accessible. A flash lamp, a synthetically constructed ruby doped with chromium, and a metal sleeve finally developed the first laser through the hands of physicist Theodore Maiman in 1960. However, experts did not acknowledge this discovery immediately. Quite the contrary: When Maiman wanted to have his findings published in a journal, the editors refused to accept the text - the possibility of combining coherent light beams with high color purity seemed too trivial, too insignificant.
Throughout the years it became clear what is possible with laser technology. Now, a broad spectrum of laser systems exists. All are based on the principle that Einstein predicted in 1917 and that Theodore Maiman tested in 1960.