What is the Laser Full Form?

Unless you’re some kind of expert, defining a laser accurately is going to be a little tough. As common as it is, one would think it’s just a simple light or beam but it’s a bit more complex than that.

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To be more specific, when we talk about the “full form” we’re referring to the extended meaning of the acronym. “Laser” is one of these so-called acronyms. If you expand it, it actually stands for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.

According to the dictionary definition, a laser is an instrument that makes use of the vibration of atoms or molecules between energy levels. This produces a beam of radiation.

But for a more detailed explanation, you can read the difference between light and laser. You might also find this video helpful:

What’s funny is that the acronym would have been more accurate if it were “LOSER” which would have stood for "Light Oscillation By Stimulated Emission Of Radiation". Of course, that never really took off for obvious reasons. 

The Use of Lasers

Lasers are used in everyday life. It is integrated into society so seamlessly, which makes it quite easy to take it for granted. 

The use of this device is so far-reaching. It is employed in something as simple as a pointer for a slideshow presentation and something as complicated as nuclear fusion. 

Here’s a list of a few ways lasers are used:

  1. Cutting, welding, drilling
  2. Various forms of surgery
  3. Cancer treatment
  4. Weaponry
  5. Target designators
  6. Microscopy
  7. Laser cooling
  8. Photochemistry
  9. Spectroscopy
  10. Laser scanning
  11. Hair removal
  12. Tumor removal
  13. Optical Storage
  14. 3D scanners

It’s absolutely fascinating, and some functions might even be new and revolutionary. Take a look at how they are used here:

Lasers are so incredible that these have caused serious inspiration in the SciFi community. If you’re a George Lucas fan, then it’s amazing how lightsabers represent such a harmonious fusion of engineering and high fantasy.

With the exponential growth in technology and engineering, perhaps in the future, we’ll actually be able to see these laser-inspired high fantasy weapons become fully realized. With its widespread use in today’s society, I do feel quite hopeful. 

The possibilities are endless:

Quick History of the Laser

The first successful laser was called the ruby laser which was invented by Theodor Maiman in the year 1960. But there’s some controversy on whether he is truly the first one.

Gordon Gould invented the MASER. This is another acronym short for  “Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation”.

But because he did not have his work patented until 1959, there were those who took the opportunity. Gould began on his optical laser in 1958 and he was actually the first one to use the word “laser”. 

Kinds of Lasers

Based on the many uses of lasers, one might easily hypothesize that there are different kinds of lasers. Of course, although it’s essentially the same technology, I wouldn’t think that you would use surgical lasers to play with your cats.

There are actually a few classifications of lasers and they have varying functions. Note that the list below provides just a few of the many laser examples and applications out there:

Type

Laser Examples & Application

Gas lasers

Carbon dioxide laser: Interferometry, holography, spectroscopy, barcode scanning, alignment, optical demonstrations.

Xenon ion laser: Scientific research

Argon laser: Retinal phototherapy, lithography, confocal microscopy, spectroscopy pumping other lasers.

Chemical lasers

Hydrogen fluoride laser: Research for laser weaponry, used in continuous wave mode

COIL (Chemical oxygen-iodine laser): Military lasers, scientific and materials research

Dye lasers

Dye lasers: Research, medicine, spectroscopy, birthmark removal, isotope separation

Metal-vapor lasers

Copper vapor laser: Dermatologist use

Helium–cadmium metal-vapor laser: Printing, fluorescence excitation examination, scientific research.

Solid-state lasers

Ruby laser: Holography, tattoo removal

Chromium-doped chrysoberyl laser: Dermatologist use, LIDAR

Holmium YAG laser: Tissue ablation, kidney stone removal, dentistry use

Semiconductor lasers

Semiconductor laser diode: Telecommunications, holography, printing, weapons, machining, welding

Vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser: Telecommunications

Others

Nuclear pumped laser: Research, weapons

Free-electron laser: Atmospheric research, medical use

Acronyms Turned Words

The English language continues to grow and adopt foreign, slang, and abbreviated words into its extensive vocabulary. Of course, this also includes acronyms that are now recognized as actual words in the dictionary.

An acronym is formed from the initials of words in a phrase. For instance, “FBI” is an acronym for the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

We may have encountered or even used plenty of words that are actually acronyms. In fact, I had no idea that laser was one of them until it was discussed in school. 

When I learned this, I wondered if other familiar words were actually acronyms. Here are several terms:

Acronym

Meaning

ZIP code

Zone Improvement Plan”

SIM card 

Subscriber Identification Module”

GIF

Graphics Interchange Format”

CAPTCHA 

This one is a lengthier phrase: 

C-ompletely 

A-utomated 

P-ublic 

T-uring Test to tell 

C-omputers and 

H-umans 

A-part

SCUBA

Self-Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus”

CARE package 

At first, this was short for “Cooperative for American Remittances to Europe” but later, this was changed to “Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere”

POG

Passion fruit, Orange, Guava”

RADAR

Radio Detection And Ranging”

SONAR

Sound Navigation And Ranging”

AWOL

Absent Without Official Leave”

SWAT

Special Weapons And Tactics”

IMAX

Image Maximum”

TASER

Thomas A. Swift’s Electric Rifle”

  • October 24, 2019
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