In 1951, physicist Charles Townes was lost in thought on a park bench in Washington, D.C., pondering a years-long puzzle: how to create an intense beam of light - short in wavelength and high in frequency - with far-reaching practical uses. Albert Einstein had theorized that it could be done, but...
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Charles Townes, the Columbia University physicist who transformed modern society with his invention of the maser and the laser, receiving the 1964 Nobel Prize in physics for his effort, has died. He was 99.
As the leader of a conservative family dynasty of tremendous wealth and extraordinary power, King Abdullah ibn Abdulaziz al Saud was charged with steering the desert kingdom of Saudi Arabia through an unprecedented period of cultural upheaval, regional strife and economic challenge.