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Acronym that stands for light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation.  The basic structure is based on an active medium (either a gas or semiconductor) contained between two reflectors. A laser's reflectors contain light by oscillating it through a medium repeatedly allowing the energy to build up with each pass. Laser radiation escapes due to a partially reflecting mirror in the assembly.

See also Coherent Light , Gas Laser , Solid State Laser , Power Density , Spatial Mode , Warm-Up Time , Laser Damage Threshold , Modulation Bandwidth , Longitudinal Mode Spacing , Static Alignment

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