Analytical description of quantum emission in optical analogs to gravity

Maxime Jules Roland Jacquet, Friedrich Ernst Wilhelm Koenig

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We consider a moving refractive index perturbation in an optical medium as an optical analogue to waves under the influence of gravity. We describe the dielectric medium by the Lagrangian of the Hopfield model. We supplement the field theory in curved spacetime for this model to solve the scattering problem for all modes and frequencies analytically. Because of dispersion, the kinematic scenario of the field modes may contain optical event horizons for some frequencies. We calculate the spectra of spontaneous emission in the frame co-moving with the perturbation and in the laboratory frame. We also calculate the spectrally-resolved photon number correlations in either frame. The emitted multimode field comes in different types depending on the presence of horizons. We show that these types are robust against changes in the system parameters and thus are genuine features of optical and non-optical analogues. These methods and findings pave the way to new observations of analogue gravity in dispersive systems.
Original languageEnglish
Article number013725
Number of pages16
JournalPhysical Review. A, Atomic, molecular, and optical physics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 27 Jul 2020


  • Analog gravity
  • Event horizon
  • Hawking radiation
  • Optical horizon
  • Optical analogue
  • Quantum optics
  • Quantum field theory


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