Imperial College London is a public research university located in London, United Kingdom. Its founder, Prince Albert, envisioned an area composed of the Victoria and Albert Museum, Natural History Museum, Science Museum, Royal Albert Hall, and the Imperial Institute. The Imperial Institute was opened by Queen Victoria, his wife, who laid the foundation stone in 1887. In 1907, Imperial College London was formed by Royal Charter, and joined the University of London. The college left the University of London one hundred years later. Imperial has expanded its curriculum into medicine through mergers with several historic medical schools. In 2004, Queen Elizabeth II opened the Imperial College Business School.
Imperial is organised by faculties of science, engineering, medicine and business. The main campus is located in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The university has an emphasis on the sciences and technology and their practical application. Imperial’s contributions to society include the discovery of penicillin, the development of holography, and of fibre optics.
Imperial is consistently ranked as one of the world’s top ten universities. It has been ranked as the most innovative university in Europe. Imperial staff and alumni include 15 Nobel laureates, 2 Fields Medalists, 70 Fellows of the Royal Society, 82 Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering and 78 Fellows of the Academy of Medical Sciences.