We theoretically investigate the microscopic mechanism of conversion between the electron spin and the microscopic local rotation of atoms in crystals. In phonon modes with angular momenta, the atoms microscopically rotate around their equilibrium positions in crystals. In a simple toy model with phonons, we calculate the spin expectation value by using the adiabatic series expansion. We show that the time-averaged spin magnetization is generated by the microscopic local rotation of atoms via the spin-orbit interaction. On the other hand, in the system with a simple vibration of atoms, time-averaged spin magnetization becomes zero due to the time-reversal symmetry. Moreover, the magnitude of the time-averaged spin magnetization depends on the inverse of the difference of instantaneous eigenenergy, and we show that it becomes smaller in band insulators with a larger gap.
Physical Review Research
- Pub Date:
- June 2020
- Condensed Matter - Mesoscale and Nanoscale Physics;
- Condensed Matter - Other Condensed Matter
- 11 pages, 7 figures, to be published in Phys. Rev. Research