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Emmanuel I. Rashba (born October 30, 1927, Kiev) is a Soviet-American theoretical physicist of Jewish origin who worked at Ukraine, Russia and in the United States. Rashba is known for his contributions to different areas of condensed matter physics and spintronics, especially the Rashba effect in spin physics, and also for the prediction of electric dipole spin resonance (EDSR),[1] that was widely investigated[2] and became a regular tool for operating electron spins in nanostructures, phase transitions in spin-orbit coupled systems driven by change of Fermi surface topology, [3] Giant oscillator strength of impurity excitons,[4] and coexistence of free and self-trapped excitons.[5] The principal subject of spintronics is all-electric operation of electron spins, and EDSR was the first phenomenon predicted and experimentally observed in this field.

Emmanuel Rashba
Native name
Ukrainian: Еммануїл Йосипович Рашба
Russian: Эммануил Иосифович Рашба
Born (1927-10-30) October 30, 1927 (age 91)
Alma materTaras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Physical Department
Known forRashba effect
Giant oscillator strength
Scientific career
FieldsCondensed matter physics, spintronics, nanoscience
InstitutionsInstitute of Physics (Kiev), Institute of Semiconductors (Kiev), Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics (Moscow), University of Utah (Salt Lake City), Harvard University (Cambridge, Massachusetts)



Born in Kiev, Ukraine, Rashba survived the Nazi invasion during the Second World War by fleeing with his family to Kazan where he started studying physics at the Kazan University. His father Iosif Rashba was a prominent defence lawyer, a widely educated humanitarian, and his mother Rosalia was a teacher of English.[6] After returning to Kiev he graduated from the Physics Department of Kiev University in 1949. His Instructors were Alexander Davydov, Solomon Pekar and Kirill Tolpygo. Rashba' graduation fell onto the last years of Stalin's reign darkened by extreme national chauvinism. As a result, he had to change temporary jobs five times during the five following years. During this time he initiated, as applied to dams, theory of gravitational stresses in growing elastic bodies,[7] and also developed a theory of exciton-phonon coupling in molecular crystals. In 1954 Rashba was accepted to the Semiconductor Department of the Institute of Physics of the Academy of Sciences of the Ukraine where he initially worked on the theory of transistors but earned his PhD degree in 1956 on his work on exciton-phonon coupling. When the Institute for Semiconductors of the same Academy was established in 1960, Rashba headed there the Department for Theory of Semiconductor Devices. He earned his Doctor of Sciences degree from the A.F. Ioffe Institute in Leningrad in 1963 for his work on spin-orbit coupling in semiconductors and exciton spectroscopy of molecular crystals (deducing energy spectra of excitons in pure crystals from optical spectra of mixed crystals, in collaboration with Vladimir Broude). In 1966, after the institute of Theoretical Physics of the Academy of Sciences of USSR (currently the Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics) was established in Chernogolovka, Rashba moved there and served as the Head of the Theory of Semiconductors Division and afterwards as a Principal Scientist until 1997. During 1968-1982, Rashba also served as a professor of physics at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MFTI).

In 1991 Rashba moved to the United States where he worked as a research scholar at the University of Utah (1992-1999), SUNY at Buffalo (2001-2004), and the Harvard University (2004-2015). He was also associated with Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT, 2000-2004), served as an Adjunct Professor at Dartmouth College (2000-2003) and as a Rutherford Professor at the Loughborough University (2007 - 2010). During this period Rashba worked mostly on spintronics and physics of nanosystems. After Rashba's severe neurological disease (1997) his work was facilitated by his wife Erna and the family of his daughter.

For about 15 years Rashba served as a member of the Editorial boards of the journals JETP Letters and Journal of Luminescence.

Rashba is a Fellow of the American Physical Society. Among his recognitions are 1966 National Prize of the USSR and the International Conference on Luminescence ICL'99 Prize for his work on optical spectroscopy, Ioffe (1987, USSR) and Pekar (2007, Ukraine) Prizes for his work on spin-related phenomena, and 2005 Sir Nevill Mott (UK) and 2005 Arkady Aronov (Israel) Lectureships. His name became a part of a number of technical terms such as giant Rashba systems, Rashba physics, etc. According to Google Scholar, paper Ref. [1] is the most cited and Ref. [8] is the second most cited of the papers published in these journals respectively.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b E. I. Rashba, Properties of semiconductors with a loop of extrema, I. Cyclotron and combined resonances in a perpendicular field, Sov. Phys. Solid State 2, 1109 (1960).
  2. ^ E. I. Rashba and V. I. Sheka, Electric-Dipole Spin Resonances, in: Landau Level Spectroscopy (North Holland, Amsterdam) 1991, p. 131-206;
  3. ^ I. I. Boiko and E. I. Rashba, Sov. Phys. Solid State 2, 1692 (1960),
  4. ^ E. I. Rashba, Giant Oscillator Strengths Associated with Exciton Complexes, Sov. Phys. Semicond. 8, 807-816 (1975)
  5. ^ E. I. Rashba, Self-Trapping of Excitons, in: Excitons, (North-Holland, Amsterdam) 1982, p. 543-602.
  6. ^ E. I. Rashba, "Looking back." Journal of Superconductivity 16, 599-623 (2003) doi:10.1023/A:1025345319199
  7. ^ E. I. Rashba, Dependence of gravitational stresses in massive bodies on the sequencing of their construction, Proc. Inst. Civil Engin. of Acad. of Sci. Ukrain. SSR (in Russian), 18, 23-27 (1953)
  8. ^ Yu. A. Bychkov and E. I. Rashba, Properties of a 2D electron gas with lifted spectrum degeneracy, JETP Lett. 39, 78 (1984)

External linksEdit

Further readingEdit

  • A. Manchon, H. C. Koo, J. Nitta, S. M. Frolov, and R. A. Duine, New perspectives for Rashba spin–orbit coupling, Nature Materials 14, 871-882 (2015).
  • G. Bihlmayer, O. Rader and R. Winkler, Focus on the Rashba effect, New J. Phys. 17, 050202 (2015),
  • Yeom, Han Woong; Grioni, Marco, eds. (May 2015). "Special issue on electron spectroscopy for Rashba spin-orbit interaction". Journal of Electron Spectroscopy and Related Phenomena. 201: 1–126. ISSN 0368-2048. Retrieved 28 January 2019.
  • E. I. Rashba, Semiconductors with a loop of extrema, Czech. J. Phys., Special Publication (Prague, 1961), pp. 45–-48 (Proceedings of the International Conference on Semiconductor Physics, Prague 1960), English translation: Journ. of Electr. Spectrosc. and Related Phenom. 201, Special Issue: SI, Pages: 4-5, Published: May 2015.
  • E. I. Rashba, Preface, Journ. of Electr. Spectrosc. and Related Phenom. 201, Special Issue: SI, Pages: 1-1, Published: May 2015,
  • D. Bercioux and P. Lucignano, Quantum transport in Rashba spin–orbit materials: a review, Rep. Prog. Phys. 78, 106001 (2015);
  • E. I. Rashba and V. I. Sheka, Symmetry of Energy Bands in Crystals of Wurtzite Type II. Symmetry of Bands with Spin-Orbit Interaction Included, Fiz. Tverd. Tela: Collected Papers, v. 2, 162, 1959. English translation:
  • V. L. Broude, E. I. Rashba, and E. F. Sheka, Spectroscopy of molecular excitons (Springer, NY) 1985.
  • A.S. Ioselevich and E. I. Rashba, Theory of Nonradiative Trapping in Solids, in: Quantum Tunneling in Condensed Media (Elsevier, 1992), pp. 347–425
  • A. V. Manzhirov and S. A. Lychev, The mathematical theory of growing solids: Finite deformations, Doklady Physics, 57, 160-163 (2012). (MAIK Nauka/Interperiodica).