Students will be able to
- describe the electron energy level structure of the active medium of a laser,
- associate the emission and absorption of photons by electrons in ground, excited, and metastable energy level states with electron transitions between these energy levels,
- define population inversion in the active medium of a laser as the state in which the medium contains more atoms in energy states higher than the ground state than atoms in the ground state,
- explain why a metastable energy level of lower energy than an accessible excited energy level is necessary for population inversion to occur.
- explain why the resonant cavity of a laser is necessary for amplification of stimulated emission.