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Spin Axis For Photon

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Posted by Tim on March 8, 2003 03:14:37 UTC

just looked it up for the photon and you are correct, it is tricky though as polariztion is always vertical to the direction of travel of the photon while the spin axis is always parallel to the direction of travel.

as for the wave function with respect to electron spin you are probably right, i say probably because i'll be darned if i can make sense what they are saying in my old PCHEM book (chuckle).... in the discussion relativistic effects are considered along with the non-relativisitic Shrodinger equation and some of Dirac's results (touted as to complex to go into :), they are in this discussion willing (grudinglly so :) to show a little diagram of a spherical electron "spining on an axis" saying that such a picture gives rise to the practice of calling intrinsic angular momentum spin angular momentum or electron spin. they go into looking out for the diffence in orbital angular momentum and spin angular momentum (duh :).
finally with all these "wave function" like equations which i'm not posting they do come up with +1/2hbar and -1/2hbar.... so i guess you are correct.
spin certainly is a complex subject.

tim

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