ABSTRACT: Relativistic self-consistent mean-field (SCMF) models naturally account for the coupling of the nucleon spin to its orbital motion, whereas nonrelativistic SCMF methods necessitate a phenomenological ansatz for the effective spin-orbit potential. Recent experimental studies aim to explore the isospin properties of the effective spin-orbit interaction in nuclei. SCMF models are very useful in the interpretation of the corresponding data; however, standard relativistic mean-field and nonrelativistic Hartree-Fock models use effective spin-orbit potentials with different isovector properties, mainly because exchange contributions are not treated explicitly in the former. The impact of exchange terms on the effective spin-orbit potential in relativistic mean-field models is analyzed, and it is shown that it leads to an isovector structure similar to the one used in standard nonrelativistic Hartree-Fock models. Data on the isospin dependence of spin-orbit splittings in spherical nuclei could be used to constrain the isovector-scalar channel of relativistic mean-field models. The reproduction of the empirical kink in the isotope shifts of even Pb nuclei by relativistic effective interactions points to the occurrence of pseudospin symmetry in the single-neutron spectra in these nuclei.

J.-P. Ebran, A. Mutschler, E. Khan, and D. Vretenar: Phys. Rev. C 94, 024304 (2016)