Microwave heating is used to activate solid phase epitaxial re-growth of amorphous silicon layers on single crystal silicon substrates. Layers of single crystal silicon were made amorphous through ion implantation with varying doses of boron or arsenic. Microwave processing occurred inside a 2.45 GHz, 1300 W cavity applicator microwave system for time-durations of 1-120 minutes. Sample temperatures were monitored using optical pyrometery. Rutherford backscattering spectrometry, and cross-sectional transmission electron microscopy were used to monitor crystalline quality in as-implanted and annealed samples. Sheet resistance readings show dopant activation occurring in both boron and arsenic implanted samples. In samples with large doses of arsenic, the defects resulting from vacancies and/or micro cluster precipitates are seen in transmission electron micrographs. Materials properties are used to explain microwave heating of silicon and demonstrate that the damage created in the implantation process serves to enhance microwave absorption.