Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


The Department of Physics and Astronomy

Document Type



The Hawking effect is an exciting physical prediction lying at the intersection of the two most successful theories of the past century, namely, Einstein’s theory of relativity and quantum mechanics. In this dissertation, we put special emphasis on the quantum aspects of the Hawking process encoded in the entanglement shared by the emitted fluxes of created quanta. In particular, we employ sharp tools from quantum information theory to quantify the entanglement produced by the Hawking effect throughout the black hole evaporation process. Our framework allows us to extend previous calculations of entanglement to a larger set of cases, for instance, the situation where a black hole is immersed in a thermal bath, such as the cosmic microwave background (CMB), and the quantum state of infalling radiation is, therefore, mixed.

Motivated by recent intense experimental efforts, we extend our framework to the case of an optical white-black hole pair analog gravity system created by a strong electromagnetic pulse propagating in a non-linear dielectric medium. One of the main results presented in this dissertation is the development of a numerical code that recreates the Hawking process in such an optical analog. Utilizing this code together with our quantum information tools, we study how different input quantum states of light alter the amount of the entanglement produced in the Hawking pairs. We find that although ambient thermal noise and detector inefficiencies, unsurprisingly, tend to reduce quantum correlations in the Hawking process, when horizons are illuminated with single-mode squeezed states of light, the entanglement generated increases in a tunable manner.

As a last application in optical analogs, we investigate the laser configuration in which two strong electromagnetic pulses propagate in a non-linear dielectric medium exchanging Hawking quanta, thus, stimulating each other. In such a setup, we observe that not only the number of Hawking quanta created is exponentially increased but also the entanglement shared between the mode of the electromagnetic field inside the laser cavity with the modes of the field outside the cavity grows with time. We conclude that these novel results open a promising window for the observability of the quantum origin of the Hawking effect in the lab.



Committee Chair

Agullo, Ivan