Bulk crystalline silicon wafers are transferred after the completion of circuit fabrication to form thin films of crystalline circuitry on almost any support, such as metal, semiconductor, plastic, polymer, glass, wood, and paper. In particular, this technique is suitable to form silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers, whereby the devices and circuits formed exhibit superior performance after transfer due to the removal of the silicon substrate. The added cost of the transfer process to conventional silicon fabrication is insignificant. No epitaxial, lift-off, release or buried oxide layers are needed to perform the transfer of single or multiple wafers onto support members. The transfer process may be performed at temperatures of 50.degree. C. or less, permits transparency around the circuits and does not require post-transfer patterning. Consequently, the technique opens up new avenues for the use of integrated circuit devices in high-brightness, high-resolution video-speed color displays, reduced-thickness increased-flexibility intelligent cards, flexible electronics on ultrathin support members, adhesive electronics, touch screen electronics, items requiring low weight materials, smart cards, intelligent keys for encryption systems, toys, large area circuits, flexible supports, and other applications. The added process flexibility also permits a cheap technique for increasing circuit speed of market driven technologies such as microprocessors at little added expense.
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT RIGHTS
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore Laboratory.