In 1952 Shpolsky and his junior researchers A. A. Ilyina and L. A. Klimov discovered Shpolsky effect in organic compounds, a property that allows highly selective spectroscopic identification of substances that normally do not possess clearly defined spectral lines or bands. The discovery evolved into a discipline of its own, Shpolsky spectroscopy.
Personov was a Soviet and Russian scientist, professor, doctor, one of the founders of selective laser spectroscopy of complex molecules in solids (frozen solutions). He was awarded the Humboldt Prize in 1998.