Spin is one of the defining properties of elementary particles, i.e. number that describes how an elementary particle behaves, much like electric charge and mass.

Possible values are half integer numbers: 0, 1/2, 1, 3/2, and so on.

The approach shown in this section: Section "Spin comes naturally when adding relativity to quantum mechanics" shows what the spin number actually means in general. As shown there, the spin number it is a direct consequence of having the laws of nature be Lorentz invariant. Different spin numbers are just different ways in which this can be achieved as per different Representation of the Lorentz group.

Video 8. "Quantum Mechanics 9a - Photon Spin and Schrodinger's Cat I by ViaScience (2013)" explains nicely how:

- incorporated into the Dirac equation as a natural consequence of special relativity corrections, but not naturally present in the Schrödinger equation, see also: the Dirac equation predicts spin
- photon spin can be either linear or circular
- the linear one can be made from a superposition of circular ones
- straight antennas produce linearly polarized photos, and Helical antennas circularly polarized ones
- a jump between 2s and 2p in an atom changes angular momentum. Therefore, the photon must carry angular momentum as well as energy.
- cannot be classically explained, because even for a very large estimate of the electron size, its surface would have to spin faster than light to achieve that magnetic momentum with the known electron charge
- as shown at Video 5. "Quantum Mechanics 12b - Dirac Equation II by ViaScience (2015)", observers in different frames of reference see different spin states

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## Ancestors

## Incoming links

- Defining properties of elementary particles
- Fine structure
- Internal and spacetime symmetries
- Particle physics
- Quantum entanglement
- Quantum Mechanical View of Reality by Richard Feynman (1983)
- Quantum superposition
- Schrödinger picture
- Solutions of the Dirac equation
- Spin number of a field
- Two-state quantum system
- Why do multiple electrons occupy the same orbital if electrons repel each other?
- Zeeman effect