Optomechanical approach to controlling the temperature and chemical potential of light
Photonic systems are among the most promising avenues to perform quantum simulations by emulating the dynamics of the physical problems of interest in a well-controllable photonic platform. However, unlike most bosonic systems, the particle number in photonic systems is usually not conversed during thermalization processes and corresponds to zero chemical potential. To exploit the full power of photonic quantum simulators, here we build upon the general concept of generating a controllable chemical potential for photons through "Floquet thermalization" -- effective thermalization in a rotating frame -- with an implementation appropriate for quantum optomechanics or circuit quantum electrodynamics. Our approach admits near-equilibrium macroscopically occupied optical states and paves the way for photonic many-body quantum simulations.