Jennifer Schloss is a staff scientist at MIT Lincoln Laboratory, where she is developing new sensing technologies using quantum impurities in diamond.
She received her PhD from MIT in 2019. Her thesis work also centered on quantum sensing with diamond and, in particular, developing magnetic sensors and imagers for neuroscience applications. Using large ensembles of nitrogen-vacancy (NV) color centers in diamond, she and her colleagues detected magnetic field signals from single firing neurons. Her research pushed forward the field of quantum sensing towards enabling high-sensitivity magnetic imaging of functional activity in neurons and neuronal circuits.
Jenny was born and raised in Concord, Massachusetts and majored in physics at Oberlin College, where she worked with Stephen Fitzgerald studying gases trapped in metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) using variable-temperature infrared spectroscopy. At Oberlin she developed a passion for quantum mechanics, which led her to MIT. She spent the first three years of her PhD in an atomic physics group working to create ultracold gases of polar molecules. Over time, though, she became more interested in applied physics and neuroscience, seeking to tackle problems with a more near-term impact on society. Jenny transitioned to working at Harvard in Ronald Walsworth’s group, where she applied quantum systems to study the brain.
In addition to research, Jenny enjoys outdoor activities including hiking, cycling, and rock-climbing. When she’s not in the lab or out exercising, she likes the company of good friends and family.
2019, Hertz Thesis Prize, Fannie & John Hertz Foundation