We have studied buried oxide formation as a function of implantation and annealing conditions. The layers appear to form via a nucleation and growth process, so the quality of the oxide and the perfection of the overlying crystalline Si layer depend more strongly on the substrate temperature during implantation than on the annealing temperature. Since it is easier to observe the layer formation process in a thin (<1000Å) layer, we concentrated on sub-stoichiometric doses and chose substrate temperatures below 400°C to stay in a homogeneous nucleation regime. Then we varied the annealing temperature from 1150°C to 1407°C. Modeling the coalescence of the oxide layer as a thermally-activated process yields activation energies of approximately 6 eV, suggesting that crystalline damage removal may be the bottleneck for this substrate temperature regime.