Clarice Demarchi Aiello was born and raised in Sao Paulo, Brazil, the only child of parents who attached great importance to education.
Her undergraduate studies began at the University of Sao Paulo and were completed at the Ecole Polytechnique in Paris, where she graduated with a Diplome d’Ingenieur. She then obtained a Master of Philosophy in Physics at Trinity College, University of Cambridge, for work with quantum dots and photonic structures.
In 2007, she won a Fulbright Science and Technology Scholarship to study towards her PhD at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.
During her PhD, she built an experiment from scratch. The goal of the experiment is to investigate and exploit the so-called Nitrogen-Vacancy center defect in diamond, a routine anomaly where a vacancy is adjacent to a substitutional nitrogen atom in the carbon lattice. The spin of this defect works as a good “quantum bit”, and controlling it enables the implementation of quantum computing and quantum-enhanced metrology protocols.