In this study, photoreflectance (PR) spectroscopy and x-ray rocking curves measurements were used to study the variation in strain configuration, defect propagation, structural properties and direct electronic transition energies in Sim Gen superlattices (SL) and nearly relaxed Si1−x Gex buffer layers grown on < 100 > Si as a function of annealing temperature. The in-plane (a│) and perpendicular (a┴) lattice constants of the alloy buffer layers are found to vary only slightly with anneal temperature, TA, up to a temperature To. For TA To, the in-plane strain changed from roughly zero a│ ≈ a┴ (relaxed) or a┴ > a│ (compressive) to a┴ > a│ (tensile). This change in strain configuration is believed to be caused by the difference in thermal expansion coefficients between the epilayer and the Si substrate. The anneal temperature T0 is also correlated with the disappearance of higher order x-ray harmonics from the SL. This point was also correlated with a large energy shift and broadening of the PR spectra from the SL. The shift in energy of the PR spectra is explained in terms of the interdiffusion of Si and Ge at SL heterointerfaces, and to a lesser degree, the strain induced by the above mentioned difference in thermal expansion coefficients. The PR spectra of the alloy E0 transitions are also observed to shift to higher energy with increasing TA.