|Title||Optomechanical Analogy for Toy Cosmology with Quantized Scale Factor|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2017|
|Authors||Smiga, JA, Taylor, JM|
The simplest cosmologyâ€”the Friedmannâ€“Robertsonâ€“Walkerâ€“LemaÃ®tre (FRW) modelâ€” describes a spatially homogeneous and isotropic universe where the scale factor is the only dynamical parameter. Here we consider how quantized electromagnetic fields become entangled with the scale factor in a toy version of the FRW model. A system consisting of a photon, source, and detector is described in such a universe, and we find that the detection of a redshifted photon by the detector system constrains possible scale factor superpositions. Thus, measuring the redshift of the photon is equivalent to a weak measurement of the underlying cosmology. We also consider a potential optomechanical analogy system that would enable experimental exploration of these concepts. The analogy focuses on the effects of photon redshift measurement as a quantum back-action on metric variables, where the position of a movable mirror plays the role of the scale factor. By working in the rotating frame, an effective Hubble equation can be simulated with a simple free moving mirror.