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Dr. Arthur L. Schawlow

1981 Nobel Laureate

Arthur Leonard Schawlow was born in Mount Vernon, New York on May 5th 1921. Three years later his family moved to Toronto. On graduation from Vaughan Road Collegiate in 1937, both he and his sister Rosemary won scholarships to Victoria College. He studied physics at the University of Toronto, obtaining a B.A. in 1941, M.A. in 1942, and a Ph.D. in 1949. After two years as a Postdoctorate Fellow under Professor Charles H. Towns at Columbia University in New York, he became a research physicist at Bell Telephone laboratories. Towns and Schawlow published a book, Microscopic Spectroscopy in 1955 and in 1958 co-invented the laser. From 1961 to 1991 he was a professor of physics at Sanford University and was a Professor Emeritus. His many honors included a share of the 1981 Noble Prize, the U.S. National Medal of Science and seven honorary doctorates.
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