The Hubble Space Telescope, which has been traced back directly to an article written by Lyman Spitzer in 1946. Spitzer advocated and developed the idea over the next several decades. The Hubble Telescope has revolutionized astronomy and dominates the public’s conception of the universe.
Andrew Wiles’ proof of Fermat’s last theorem.
The Nash Equilibrium based upon the work of John Nash
Plate Tectonics based upon the work of W. Jason Morgan
The discovery of gravitational radiation by Joe Taylor and Russel Hulse. After moving to Princeton, Taylor did many of the painstaking observations that showed that the neutron stars were loosing energy at exactly the rate that Einstein predicted for gravitational radiation.
The discovery of the algorithm for the fast Fourier transform by James Cooley and John Tukey. This mathematical trick has had profound implications for digital computing.
Arnold Levine’s co-discovery of P53, a gene that is mutated in many human cancers.
The findings of the Wilkinson WMAP satellite about the percentage of dark energy in the universe and the work that came out of the Hubble telescope—which Jim Gunn in astrophysics designed in part.
The development of controlled fusion as a limitless energy source. This enterprise has been pursued at many institutions, but among the first and most important was the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab, founded by Lyman Spitzer approximately 50 years ago.
The development of folate analogs such as Alimta, a chemotherapeutic agent by Edward Taylor.
The finding by Elizabeth Gould and Charles Gross that new neurons are continually added to the cerebral cortex of adult monkeys.
Steve Forrest’s work on fundamental issues surrounding photonic materials, devices, and systems.