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SILICON ON INSULATOR BIPOLAR JUNCTION TRANSISTORS FOR FLEXIBLE MICROWAVE APPLICATIONS
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Microwave frequency flexible electronic devices require a high quality semiconducting material and a set of fabrication techniques that are compatible with device integration onto flexible polymer substrates. Over the past ten years, monocrystalline silicon nanomembranes (SiNMs) have been studied as a flexible semiconducting material that is compatible with industrial Si processing. Fabricated from commercial silicon on insulator (SOI) wafers, SiNMs can be transferred to flexible substrates using a variety of techniques. Due to their high carrier mobilities, SiNMs are a promising candidate for flexible microwave frequency devices. This dissertation presents fabrication techniques for flexible SiNM devices in general, as well as the progress made towards the development of a microwave frequency SiNM bipolar junction transistor (BJT). In order to overcome previous limitations associated with adhesion, novel methods for transfer printing of metal films and SiNMs are presented. These techniques enable transfer printing of a range of metal films and improve the alignment of small transfer printed SiNM devices. Work towards the development of a microwave frequency BJT on SOI for SiNM devices is also described. Utilizing a self-aligned polysilicon sidewall spacer technique, a BJT with an ultra-narrow base region is fabricated and tested. Two regimes of operation are identified and characterized under DC conditions. At low base currents, devices exhibited forward current gain as high as β<sub>F</sub> = 900. At higher base current values, a transconductance of 59 mS was observed. Microwave scattering parameters were obtained for the BJTs under both biasing conditions and compared to unbiased measurements. Microwave frequency gain was not observed. Instead, bias-dependent non-reciprocal behavior was observed and examined. Limitations associated with the microwave impedance-matched electrode configuration are presented. High current densities in the narrow electrodes cause localized heating, which leads to electrode material damage and ultimately dopant diffusion in the BJT. Finally, device design improvements are proposed to address the problem of localized heating and increase device lifetime under testing conditions. High values for DC current gain suggest that future modifications should improve microwave frequency performance and measurement reproducibility.