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Activation Energy (delta G)

The diagram shows a system with a metastable state (a), an unstable state (b), and a stable state (c). Energy is required to cause the system to go between these states. The activation energy (DG), for the a-> c process, is (Gb - Ga), that for the c -> a process is (Gb - Gc).

if the system is in contact with a thermal reservoir at a temperature T K, the probability of state (a) acquiring the required activation energy from thermal fluctuations in the system is given by: 
P = exp(- DG/kT) , where k is Boltzmann's constant

1-Freefullpdf for Scientific Publications
2-Barrett, Nix, and Tetelman,"The Principles of Engineering Materials," Prentice Hall (1973)