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Charles Townes Honored at
SPIE's OSETI III Conference

January 22, 2001

 

Press Release

The Third International Conference on Optical SETI (Optical SETI III) is being held this week (January 22-24) in San Jose as part of SPIE's Photonics West Symposium.  The conference program schedule may be found at: www.coseti.org/4273-sch.htm.

A surprise presentation was made to Nobel Laureate, Professor Charles Townes, after his talk today.  Professor, Don O'Shea, immediate past president of SPIE did the honors.  The award, which celebrates the 40th anniversary of optical SETI and Charlie's contributions to both lasers and optical SETI, was sponsored by:

International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE)
COSETI Observatory
Planetary Society
SETI League
SETI Institute

The award consists of an acrylic trophy, a high-radiance frequency-doubled semiconductor-pumped 532 nm (green) laser pointer in rosewood case and a certificate (see below for images).  The trophy, laser pointer and rosewood case are each suitably inscribed. The conference and presentation were held in the Hyatt Courtyard, Hyatt St. Claire Hotel, across the road from the San Jose Convention Center, after Charles Townes' conference paper: Reflections on Forty Years of Optical SETI -- Looking Forward and Looking Backward.

The award ceremony was followed by a one-hour press conference presented by The Planetary Society, in which Professor Townes participated.  The print and electronic media are free to use these pictures for articles.  More pictures will be posted of this event over the coming weekend. 

Dr. Stuart A. Kingsley
Chair, SPIE's OSETI Conferences
Director, The Columbus Optical SETI Observatory
contact info
www.coseti.org

 

From left to right:  Dr. Stuart A. Kingsley, OSETI III Chairman, Professor Don O'Shea, last year's SPIE President, and Professor Charles Townes, the honoree.  Charles Townes can be seen admiring the acrylic trophy just presented to him by Don O'Shea.  Stuart Kingsley is also shown holding his long-awaited Bruno Award that had been presented to him by Dr. Paul Shuch, Director of the SETI League, a few moments after Charles Townes received his award.  Mrs. Francis Townes,  Dr. Lou Friedman of the Planetary Society, Professor Frank Drake and Dr. Jill Tarter of the SETI Institute were present for the ceremony, in a room packed with Townes' admirers.

 

Award presented to Charles H. Townes on January 22, 2001 - Trophy

Trophy

 

The Inscription Reads:

Presented to
Professor Charles H. Townes
on the
40th Anniversary of Optical SETI

 

SPIE’s Third International Conference on the
Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence in the Optical Spectrum,
San Jose, California, January 22-24, 2001

  

The two papers on lasers that forever changed our world

A. L. Schawlow and C. H. Townes, “Infrared and Optical Masers,” Physical Review, December 15, 1958.

R. N. Schwartz and C. H. Townes, “Interstellar and Interplanetary Communication by Optical Masers,” Nature, April 15, 1961.

 

 

Award presented to Charles H. Townes on January 22, 2001 - Rosewood Case

Rosewood Case

 

The Inscription Reads:

SPIE’s Third International Conference on the
Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence in the Optical Spectrum,
San Jose, California, January 22-24, 2001

 

 

Award presented to Charles H. Townes on January 22, 2001 - Laser Pointer, Clip End

Laser Pointer - Clip End

 

Award presented to Charles H. Townes on January 22, 2001 - Laser Pointer, Output End

Laser Pointer - Output End

 

The Inscription Reads:

  Charles H. Townes, the Moses of Optical SETI -
 SPIE's OSETI III Conference, January 2001

 

 

Award presented to Charles H. Townes on January 22, 2001 - Award Certificate

Award Certificate

 

The Certificate Reads:

Presented to Charles H. Townes
on the occasion of the
40th Anniversary of Optical SETI

For The Laser and For Optical SETI

SPIE’s Third International Conference on the
Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence
in the Optical Spectrum,
San Jose, California, January 22-24, 2001

Award sponsored by:
International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE)
COSETI Observatory
Planetary Society
SETI League
SETI Institute

 

 

The green laser beam scattered from a surface.

Beam

 

 

 

Selected Pictures from the Award Ceremony

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7 8
 

 

9 10
 

 

11 12
 

 

 


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