Charles Hard Townes
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|Charles Hard Townes|
July 28, 1915 |
Greenville, South Carolina
Institute for Defense Analyses
University Of Michigan
|Alma mater||Furman University (B.S. & B.A.)
Duke University (M.A.)
|Doctoral advisor||William Smythe|
|Doctoral students||Ali Javan
James P. Gordon
Raymond Y. Chiao
|Known for||Inventing the Maser|
|Notable awards||Nobel Prize in Physics (1964)|
Charles Hard Townes (born July 28, 1915) is an American Nobel Prize-winning physicist and educator. Townes is known for his work on the theory and application of the maser, on which he got the fundamental patent, and other work in quantum electronics connected with both maser and laser devices. He shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1964 with Nikolay Basov and Alexander Prokhorov. The Japanese FM Towns computer and game console is named in his honour.
Townes was born in Greenville, South Carolina, the son of Ellen Hard and Henry Keith Townes, an attorney.  He earned his B.S./B.A. at Furman University where he was a member of the Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity 
Theorists like Niels Bohr and John von Neumann doubted that it was possible to create such a thing as a maser. Nobel laureates Isidor Isaac Rabi and Polykarp Kusch received the budget for their research from the same source as Townes. Three months before the first successful experiment they tried to stop him: "Look, you should stop the work you are doing. It isn't going to work. You know it's not going to work, we know it's not going to work, we know it's not going to work. You're wasting money, Just stop!".
Science and religion
Townes has been widely recognized for his scientific work and leadership.
- 1956 – elected Full Member of the National Academy of Sciences.
- 1957 – elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
- 1958 – awarded the Comstock Prize in Physics from the National Academy of Science.
- 1961 – awarded the David Sarnoff Electronics Award given by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and the Rumford Prize awarded by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
- 1962 – The John J. Carty Award for the Advancement of Science given by the National Academy of Science.
- 1962 – Stuart Ballantine Medal given by The Franklin Institute.
- 1963 – Young Medal and Prize, for distinguished research in the field of optics presented by the Institute of physics.
- 1964 – Nobel Prize in Physics with N. G. Basov and Aleksandr Prokhorov for contributions to fundamental work in quantum electronics leading to the development of the maser and laser.
- 1979 – He was awarded the Niels Bohr international medal awarded for contributions to the peaceful use of atomic energy.
- 1980 – Townes was inducted by his home state into the South Carolina Hall of Science and Technology, and has also been awarded a South Carolina Hall of Science and Technology Citation.
- 1982 – He received the National Medal of Science, presented by President Ronald Reagan.
- 1983 - appointed to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.
- 1994 – elected Foreign Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
- 1996 – awarded the Frederic Ives Medal by the OSA
- 1997 - Jansky Lectureship before the National Radio Astronomy Observatory
- 1998 – awarded the Henry Norris Russell Lectureship by the American Astronomical Society.
- 2000 – awarded the Lomonosov Medal by the Russian Academy of Sciences.
- 2003 – awarded the Telluride Tech Festival Award of Technology in Telluride, Colorado.
- 2005 – awarded the Templeton Prize for "Progress Toward Research or Discoveries about Spiritual Realities."
- He has also been awarded the LeConte Medallion.
- 2006 – Along with associate Raj Reddy, Townes was awarded the Vannevar Bush Award for Lifetime Contributions and Statesmanship to Science
- 2008 – On May 24 Townes received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the University of Redlands.
- 2010 – SPIE Gold Medal
- 2012 - awarded the Golden Goose Award for government-funded research with unexpected applications.
- 2012 - awarded the Nancy DeLoye Fitzroy and Roland V. Fitzroy Medal
- Between 1966 and 1970 he was chairman of the NASA Science Advisory Committee for the Apollo lunar landing program.
Books and Publications
- Townes, Charles (1939). Concentration of the heavy isotope of carbon and measurement of its nuclear spin.
- Gordon, J.; Zeiger, H.; Townes, Charles (1955). "The Maser—New Type of Microwave Amplifier, Frequency Standard, and Spectrometer". Physical Review 99: 1264. doi:10.1103/PhysRev.99.1264.
- Shimoda, K.; Wang, T.; Townes, Charles (1956). "Further Aspects of the Theory of the Maser". Physical Review 102: 1308. doi:10.1103/PhysRev.102.1308.
- Schawlow, Arthur; Townes, Charles (1958). "Infrared and Optical Masers". Physical Review 112 (6): 1940. doi:10.1103/PhysRev.112.1940.
- Townes, Charles (1999). How the Laser Happened: Adventures Of a Scientist. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195122688.
- Townes, Charles; Schawlow, Arthur (1955). Microwave Spectroscopy. McGraw-Hill. ISBN 9780070650954.
- Townes, Charles (1995). Making Waves. American Institute of Physics Press. ISBN 9781563963810.
- Bromberg, Joan (1991). The Laser in America, 1950-1970. MIT Press. ISBN 9780585367323.
- Hecht, Jeff (1991). Laser Pioneers. Academic Press. ISBN 9780123360304.
- Chiao, Raymond, ed. (1996). Amazing Light: A Volume Dedicated To Charles Hard Townes On His 80th Birthday. Springer. ISBN 9780387946580.
- Taylor, Nick (2000). Laser: The Inventor, the Nobel Laureate, and the Thirty-Year Patent War. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 9780684835150.
- Bertoletti, Mario (2004). The History of the Laser. Taylor & Francis. ISBN 9780750309110.
- Hecht, Jeff (2005). Beam: The Race to Make the Laser. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195142105.
- Townes, Frances (2007). Misadventures of a Scientist's Wife. Regent Press. ISBN 9781587901287.
- "Notable South Carolinians- Dr. Charles Hard Townes | Indigo Blue". Indigobluesc.com. 1915-07-28. Retrieved 2013-10-22.
- "Charles H. Townes: The Light Fantastic", Businessweek, August 1, 2004
- Heinrich Hora; Edward Teller; George Hunter Miley (1 June 2005), Edward Teller Lectures: Lasers And Inertial Fusion Energy, Imperial College Press, pp. 3–4, ISBN 978-1-86094-468-0, retrieved 27 December 2012
- Harvard Gazette June 16, 2005 Laser's inventor predicts meeting of science, religion
- "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter T". American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 7 April 2011.
- "Comstock Prize in Physics". National Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 13 February 2011.
- "John J. Carty Award for the Advancement of Science". National Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 13 February 2011.
||This article's use of external links may not follow Wikipedia's policies or guidelines. (October 2013)|
- Biography and Bibliographic Resources, from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information, United States Department of Energy
- Charles Hard Townes
- Amazing Light: Visions of Discovery (Symposium in honor of Charles Townes)
- Bright Idea: The First Lasers (history with interview clips)
- Infrared Spatial Interferometer Array
- Research page
- Oral History interview transcript with Charles H. Townes 20 and 21 May 1987, American Institute of Physics, Niels Bohr Library and Archives
- Dedication Program for the Charles H. Townes Center for Science, Furman University, November 1, 2008