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  • Alfred Kastler was a French physicist, and Nobel Prize laureate. Kastler was born in Guebwiller and later attended the Lycée Bartholdi in Colmar, Alsace, and École Normale Supérieure in Paris in 1921. After his studies, in 1926 he began teaching physics at the Lycée of Mulhouse, and then taught at the University of Bordeaux, where he was a university professor until 1941. Georges Bruhat asked him to come back to the École Normale Supérieure, where he finally obtained a chair in 1952. Collaborating with Jean Brossel, he researched quantum mechanics, the interaction between light and atoms, and spectroscopy. Kastler, working on combination of optical resonance and magnetic resonance, developed the technique of "optical pumping". Those works led to the completion of the theory of lasers and masers. He won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1966 "for the discovery and development of optical methods for studying Hertzian resonances in atoms". He was president of the board of the Institut d'optique théorique et appliquée and served as the first chairman of the non-governmental organization Action Against Hunger. Kastler also wrote poetry.

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  • "for the discovery and development of optical methods for studying Hertzian resonances in atoms"
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