Department of Physics
Clara Wanjura is a theoretical physicist who received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from Ulm University, Germany, before coming to the University of Cambridge for her PhD with Prof. Andreas Nunnenkamp (and is now officially supervised by Prof. Claudio Castelnovo). Her PhD work focusses on engineering the interplay between dissipation and topology in quantum devices, for instance, in directional amplifiers. This has important applications in telecommunication and quantum information processing.
To submit this application, to attend Zoom calls or send emails, we rely on a vast fibre optics infrastructure which transports our messages encoded as light signals all across the world.
Of particular importance are so called ‘directional amplifiers’ which amplify signals in one direction but block them in the reverse direction. These are also highly sought-after for quantum computation to amplify weak signals while protecting the fragile source against noise. I discovered a mathematical principle that unifies existing proposals for directional amplifiers and allows to straightforwardly design novel devices, while, on a fundamental level, opening up new research avenues.
I developed the idea, the mathematical framework and did all analytic and numeric calculations myself under the supervision of Andreas Nunnenkamp. Matteo Brunelli also contributed with fruitful discussions. We wrote and published the articles about our research together [Nat Commun 11, 3149 (2020); PRL 127, 213601 (2021)].
Other 2022 award winners
Ana Gatoo Jimenez de Laiglesia
Rakoen Marieke Maertens