Laser inventor dies

A leading Russian scientist who helped invent the laser has died, aged 85.

The death of Alexander Prokhorov is being described as the end of an era by colleagues and politicians, including President Putin.

Prokhorov won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1964, along with colleague Nikolai Basov and US citizen Charles Townes for work in the field of quantum electronics.

The scientific pioneer was a leading member of the Russian Academy of Sciences and won numerous state awards, despite a reputation for being fiercely independent.

Born in Australia in 1916, Mr Prokhorov came to the Soviet Union in 1923 with his family who were Communist sympathisers.

He fought in World War II before injury forced him to return home, where he returned to his studies.

News source: BBC News | Tech - Laser inventor dies

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