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Point defects in solids can give rise to anelastic relaxation provided that the defects behave as elastic dipoles. Experiments with single crystals give information on the atomic configuration of the point defects. Measurements of the orientation dependence of the relaxation strength allow determination of the defect symmetry and the dipole shape factor 6h = I h, -A, I . This is demonstrated for two examples: (i) The Snoek relaxation of 0 and N in Nb and Ta single crystals: The 6h values for 0doi:10.1051/jp4:1996812 fatcat:7e6omd5gjjeb7g4ishvbn4wgim