Karlijn Kruiswijk, Isidora Aray Day and Alicja Dutkiewicz win Casimir Prize 2021


In recognition of their excellent study results, the Hendrik Casimir Prize 2021 is awarded to three former Casimir pre-PhD track students: Karlijn Kruiswijk and Alicja Dutkiewicz from Leiden and Isidora Aray Day from Delft. They will receive a prize of Euro 750,00 each and a certificate. In the below, you can read about their research.

 Given the Covid-19 Pandemic, there was no official ceremony - the prizes were sent to the winners. They will be invited to the next Hendrik Casimir Prize Ceremony later this year, to receive the recognition they deserve.




After studying Physics and Astronomy at Leiden University, I started my master in physics at the same place. Here I did various research projects, and mainly focussed on the interplay between general relativity and quantum mechanics, which has always interested me. My final masters' thesis was on the quantum backreaction on gravity, where I worked on a new method to calculate the evolution of a quantum field in relativistic gravity. Right now, I am studying neutrino detection with the IceCube detector for my PhD at UCLouvain.



I am currently a PhD researcher in the Quantum Tinkerer group, the group I joined for my masters thesis in Applied Physics at TU Delft. During my masters I followed the Casimir pre-PhD track and did two rotations: one at MPI-PKS Dresden and the other one with Eliska Greplova at TU Delft.

At the moment I am starting new projects in the field of topology in condensed matter physics.



The goal of my Master's thesis was designing a new quantum phase estimation algorithm optimised for near-term quantum devices. The thesis, completed under the supervision of Thomas O'Brien and Barbara Terhal, is due for journal publication and poster presentation at the QIP conference. I am continuing the collaboration with Dr O'Brien through my Google PhD fellowship at Leiden University, and am now focused on Hamiltonian learning. I have also recently begun working as a Student Researcher at Google.