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A new method for the interneedle-distance optimization of a multineedle-to-plane barrier discharge reactor is presented. As we know, there is gas breakdown when, in some regions between electrodes, the electric field is higher than the breakdown field; hence, the region may play a dominant role for the discharge, and the enhancement of its volume ratio in the reactor will allow an increase in discharge energy density. This can be achieved by structure optimization. With the finite-element method, the 3-D profiles of an electrostatic field in the reactor are acquired for a series of interneedle distances, thereby the one-to-one relationship between the volume ratio and interneedle distance is obtained. This allows the optimal interneedle distance for power input efficiency to be identified, as related to the maximal volume ratio. The optimal distance is between 7.2 and 8.4 mm in our simulation range, decreasing with the increase of operating voltages from 16 to 26 kV. The simulation results are experimentally validated by discharge energy measurement as well as the performance of SO2 removal from indoor air. This structure optimization method leads to a simple way to obtain the optimal interneedle distance for energy input efficiency and hence benefits commercial use.