Input-output theory of cavities in the ultrastrong coupling regime: The case of time-independent cavity parameters
We present a full quantum theory for the dissipative dynamics of an optical cavity in the ultrastrong light-matter coupling regime, in which the vacuum Rabi frequency is a significant fraction of the active electronic transition frequency and the antiresonant terms of the light-matter coupling play an important role. In particular, our model can be applied to the case of intersubband transitions in doped semiconductor quantum wells embedded in a microcavity. The coupling of the intracavity photonic mode and of the electronic polarization to the external, frequency-dependent, dissipation baths is taken into account by means of quantum Langevin equations in the input-output formalism. In the case of a time-independent vacuum Rabi frequency, exact analytical expressions for the operators are obtained, which allows us to characterize the quantum dissipative response of the cavity to an arbitrary initial condition (vacuum, coherent field, thermal excitation). For a vacuum input in both the photonic and electronic polarization modes, the ground state of the cavity system is a two-mode squeezed vacuum state with a finite population in both photonic and electronic modes. These excitations are, however, virtual and cannot escape from the cavity: for a vacuum input, a vacuum output is found, without any trace of the intracavity squeezing. For a coherent photonic input the linear optical response spectra (reflectivity, absorption, transmission) have been studied, and signatures of the ultrastrong coupling have been identified in the asymmetric and peculiar anticrossing of the polaritonic eigenmodes. Finally, we have calculated the electroluminescence spectra in the case of an incoherent electronic input: the emission intensity in the ultrastrong coupling regime results in being significantly enhanced as compared to the case of an isolated quantum well without a surrounding cavity.