The interaction of the electron spin magnetic moment with the magnetic moment due to the orbital motion of the electron. One consequence of spin-orbit coupling is the mixing of zero-order states of different multiplicity. This effect may result in fine structure called spin-orbit splitting.
PAC, 1996, 68, 2223. 'Glossary of terms used in photochemistry (IUPAC Recommendations 1996)' on page 2277 (https://doi.org/10.1351/pac199668122223)