What is Spin orbit coupling: Definition and 21 Discussions

In quantum physics, the spin–orbit interaction (also called spin–orbit effect or spin–orbit coupling) is a relativistic interaction of a particle's spin with its motion inside a potential. A key example of this phenomenon is the spin–orbit interaction leading to shifts in an electron's atomic energy levels, due to electromagnetic interaction between the electron's magnetic dipole, its orbital motion, and the electrostatic field of the positively charged nucleus. This phenomenon is detectable as a splitting of spectral lines, which can be thought of as a Zeeman effect product of two relativistic effects: the apparent magnetic field seen from the electron perspective and the magnetic moment of the electron associated with its intrinsic spin. A similar effect, due to the relationship between angular momentum and the strong nuclear force, occurs for protons and neutrons moving inside the nucleus, leading to a shift in their energy levels in the nucleus shell model. In the field of spintronics, spin–orbit effects for electrons in semiconductors and other materials are explored for technological applications. The spin–orbit interaction is one cause of magnetocrystalline anisotropy and the spin Hall effect.
For atoms, energy level splitting produced by the spin–orbit interaction is usually of the same order in size as the relativistic corrections to the kinetic energy and the zitterbewegung effect. The addition of these three corrections is known as the fine structure. The interaction between the magnetic field created by the electron and the magnetic moment of the nucleus is a slighter correction to the energy levels known as the hyperfine structure.

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  1. E

    I Spin orbit coupling/Filling order/Nucleus

    Which tends to fill first: p3/2 or p1/2? d5/2 or d3/2? And why is there no spin orbit coupling in the nucleus?
  2. K

    I Vector addition in spin orbit coupling

    Hello! I am reading about spin-orbit coupling in Griffiths book, and at a point he shows an image (section 6.4.1) of the vectors L and S coupled together to give J (figure 6.10) and he says that L and S precess rapidly around J. I am not totally sure I understand this. I know that in the...
  3. T

    Spin Orbit Coupling + Magnetic Field

    I am pretty confused where to even start with this question, which is not a good thing less than a week before the final :(. One thing in particular that I don't get is that I thought we were using the Clebsch-Gordon coefficients for ##\vert jm \rangle ## states, not for ##\vert J, J_z \rangle...
  4. Zala Jaydevsinh

    I About L-S interaction or spin orbit coupling

    I want to understand this topic but I can not understand very well so please suggest any reading for good conceptual grasp of this topic.
  5. amjad-sh

    Band structure of a 2deg including spin orbit coupling

    first of all, I tried to obtain the energy eigenvalues of the Hamiltonian, by using the equation ##det(\hat H -\lambda \hat I)=0## ##\gamma V\delta(z)(\hat z \times \mathbf{p}) \cdot \sigma=\gamma V\delta(z)(p_x\hat j-p_y\hat i)\cdot(\sigma_x\hat i + \sigma _y \hat j)=\gamma...
  6. cosmik debris

    I Frame Dragging Effect vs Spin Orbit Coupling in GR

    I believe that GR cannot describe exchange of classical intrinsic angular momentum and orbital angular momentum. The exchange of orbital and intrinsic angular momentum requires that the momentum tensor be non-symmetric during the exchange. GR cannot accommodate a non-symmetric momentum tensor...
  7. M

    Spin-orbit coupling and the Zeemann effect

    Homework Statement Consider an electron in a hydrogen atom in the presence of a constant magnetic field ##B##, which we take to be parallel to the ##z##-axis. Without the magnetic field and ignoring the spin-orbit coupling, the eigenfunctions are labelled by ##\vert n, l, m, m_s \rangle##...
  8. Edge5

    I Does spin orbit coupling cause the split in the energy level of the electron?

    Hi, As far as I understand spin orbit coupling is the interaction between proton of atom and electron. Proton's motion(from the frame of electron) around electron creates magnetic field. Hence electron experiences magnetic field. Does this magnetic field produces a Zeeman effect which cause...
  9. H

    A Is there a topological insulator without Spin Orbit Coupling (SOC)?

    There are some famous materials is determined as TI induced by SOC, like graphene and so on. But from some formula, for instance, Kane-Fu formula, they just need parities to get Z2 number. So I wonder if there is a known TI with weak soc.
  10. amjad-sh

    The origin of spin orbit coupling

    I have read in the internet that "One naturally derive the dirac equation when starting from the relativistic expression of kinetic energy: ##\mathbf H^2=c^2\mathbf P^2 +m^2c^4## where ##\mathbf P## is the canonical momentum. Inclusion of electric and magnetic potentials ##\phi## and ##A## by...
  11. F

    Understanding Spin-Orbit Coupling in Quantum Mechanics

    So we obtain the perturbation Hamiltonian H as something proportional to S.L/r3 and the first order energy shift is then the expectation value of this perturbation Hamiltonian in the state that is being perturbed. So let a general gross structure state that we are perturbing be |n l ml s ms >...
  12. A

    Spin orbit coupling and hydrogen problem

    I don't know if you are familiar with it, but in pertubationt theory for hydrogen it is handy to look for eigenstates of J = L + S since this commutes with the hamiltonian (L and S are not separately conserved). My book then says that the good quantum numbers are: n,l, j, mj I must admit I'm...
  13. A

    Understanding Spin Orbit Coupling: Deriving the Hamiltonian

    I have a question about how my book derives a formula. It starts with: We have an electron free too move on a cylinder and from the cylinder there is an electric field pointing radially outwards. Now for an electron moving in an electric field it sees local magnetic field given by: B =...
  14. F

    Spin Orbit Coupling leading to topological insulator behaviour

    Hi I am studying how the spin orbit interaction in certain materials can lead to topological insulator effects and realize it has something to do with the effects of the SOC on the band structure of the material (Bi2Se3), possibly due to the inversion of the valence and conduction band but I...
  15. C

    Zeeman effect - spin orbit coupling

    As far as I know: the possible orientations that the total angular momentum can take (given my Mj) are degenerate. if we apply a magnetic field, degeneracy will be lost and different states arise. this is the zeeman effect but when looking up on google for zeeman effect, a webpage used as an...
  16. R

    Spin orbit coupling for atom at centre of complex

    Hello Forum, This is my first post. There is some preamble, but the problem itself is straightforward enough, even though I cannot solve it. I'm trying to calculate the spin orbit matrix for an alkali metal atom at the centre of a complex of 12 noble gas...
  17. A

    Calculate Spin-Orbit Coupling in 19K: Estimate <(1/r)dV/dr>

    Homework Statement The 4p → 4s transition in 19K produces a pair of lines at 766.49nm and 769.90nm. Estimate the value of <(1/r)dV/dr> for the optically active electron in 19 K Homework Equations The Attempt at a Solution help needed urgently please. All i know so far is...
  18. H

    Solving Spin-Orbit Coupling in Hydrogen & Li+2

    Homework Statement One of the n=5 states of hydrogen is split by spin-orbit coupling into two levels with an energy difference of 0.0039 cm^-1 . Determine the 'l' quantum number for this state and predict the analogous splitting for doubly ionised Li . Homework Equations The fine...
  19. F

    Hydrogen Atom Spin Orbit Coupling

    hi guys,could anyone please help with this question? How many levels will n=4 hydrogen atom split into due to the spin orbit coupling? i know J = L + S i don't know if i have understood the concepts properly - i know if n = 1,2,3...
  20. E

    Stern-Gerlach Experiment: Spin Orbit Coupling

    Hi, We're looking at the consequences of the Stern-Gerlach experiment which has lead us to the idea of spin orbit coupling in the hydrogen atom. In class, the coupling term of the Hamiltonian was derived by assuming the electron has a magnetic moment, then viewing the hydrogen atom in the...
  21. S

    Spin Orbit Coupling: Commutation Relations?

    I'm a little confused as to whether the following commutation relations still hold when spin orbit coupling occurs: [Sx,Lx] = 0 [Sx,Ly] = 0 [S^2, Lx] = 0 [L^2, Sx] = 0 etc. thanks very much for your help