1990 - 2000

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  • Drinfeld is awarded a Fields Medal at the International Congress of Mathematicians in Kyoto, Japan for his work on quantum groups and for his work in number theory.



  • Menasco and Thistlethwaite prove the knot theory conjecture known as "Tait's Second Conjecture", namely that any two reduced alternating diagrams of the same prime knot are related by a sequence of twists.



  • A large prize is offered by banker Andrew Beal for a solution to the Beal Conjecture: the equation xp+yq=zrx^{p} + y^{q} = z^{r} has no solutions for p,q,r>2p, q, r > 2 and coprime integers x,y,zx, y, z.



  • Borcherds is awarded a Fields Medal for his work in automorphic forms and mathematical physics; Gowers receives one for his work in functional analysis and combinatorics; Kontsevich receives one for his work in algebraic geometry, algebraic topology, and mathematical physics; and McMullen receives one for his work on holomorphic dynamics and geometry of 3-dimensional manifolds.
  • Thomas Hales proves Kepler's problem on sphere packing.


  • The Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search project finds the 38th Mersenne prime: 26972593 -1.
  • Conrad and Taylor prove the "Taniyama-Shimura conjecture". Wiles proved a special case in 1993 on his way to giving a proof of Fermat's Last Theorem.