I am currently learning about lasers and of course one huge topic is stimulated emission. I know what stimulated emission is, but not why it works the way it does. I am aware of the fact that bosons 'want' to be in the same quantum state, but how can one photon induce the emission of another?

Note that I have read several answers on stackexchange such as this, this or this.

  • $\begingroup$ Ultimately, the true reason is "because quantum mechanics", and any answers that skirt around that fact are limited to being analogies at best. As such, without knowing how much formal QM you know, this is very hard to answer. $\endgroup$ Dec 15, 2016 at 11:32
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Perhaps you'll find the answers in [physics.stackexchange.com/questions/282238/… useful. $\endgroup$ Dec 15, 2016 at 12:02
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ One can say a bit more if one does not try to understand everything in the image of light corpuscules. Light is an electromagnetic wave. The oscillating electric field affects the electrons. And then you can gain a classical understanding in terms of Lorentz oscillators or a semiclassical understanding in terms of mixing of stationairy states. $\endgroup$
    – user137289
    Dec 15, 2016 at 12:14
  • $\begingroup$ See physics.stackexchange.com/questions/430268/… $\endgroup$
    – user213887
    Dec 7, 2018 at 5:24


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.