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A novel multielectrode dielectric-barrier discharge plasma system operating at atmospheric pressure in air, which has improved microbial inactivation properties is described. The interaction of high-voltage components necessary to create the discharge is outlined, and the unique configuration of electrodes driven by power insulated gate bipolar transistors is put forward. Active species gain is in evidence in this system due to the effective feedforward mechanism employed and are validated by carrying out microbial inactivation studies on E. coli. Both active species gain and microbial inactivation hypotheses are verified by numerical modeling.