neon light vs laser

From:  Michael Andrus [SMTP:andrus-at-ccountry-dot-net]
Sent:  Friday, April 17, 1998 11:46 PM
To:  tesla-at-pupman-dot-com
Subject:  Fw: neon light vs laser

Lasers and coils have one big thing in common, Resonance!!!
For a HeNe (neon) laser to laze the neon gas has to be in a resonant cavity
consisting of a 100% reflective mirror parallel with a 95% reflective
mirror, and the HeNe gas in between.  When the neon is excited (electricity
applied) it is much like a neon sign.  The difference is that the light
the neon starts to bounce back and fourth between the two mirrors exciting
more Ne atoms with every pass.  this way only the photons (light) moving
perpendicular to the mirrors can exit the cavity.  Thus coherence.

                                       Michael Andrus  Lasers are my other hobby