According to the hypothesis presented herein plastic flow in solids takes place by means of a change-of-phase transfer mechanism as solid →fluid →solid or solid →solution →recrystallization of solid. Expressions are derived from consideration of the thermodynamic potential relations for different physical conditions. The quantity that has been related to the viscosity of a fluid is thus seen to be a function of the “activation energy.” If the hydrostatic confining pressure be sufficiently high then release of the energy of deformation stored up in the crystal lattice can take place only by a change-of-phase mechanism.

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