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Decomposition of toluene as a typical aromatic volatile organic compound was experimentally investigated in a rotating gliding arc discharge nonthermal plasma reactor. The experiments were conducted at a gas flow rate of 5.4-10.8 m3h-1. Important parameters, including applied voltage, gas flow rate, initial concentration, and water vapor concentration, were investigated. The results showed that a higher applied voltage results in higher toluene removal and higher power deposited into a discharge system; the decomposition achieved was highly dependent on the total gas flow rate. Under the fixed specific energy density (SED), both toluene removal efficiency and energy efficiency decrease with the increase in gas flow rate. The removal efficiency of toluene decreased with an increase in the initial concentration, whereas the absolute removal amount and energy efficiency increased. For example, the removal efficiency decreased from 77% to 56% with the initial toluene concentration ranging from 200 to 2000 m g-3 as the SED was 266 J L-1; the toluene removal efficiency evidently increased as the water vapor concentration increased from 0.5945 to 1708.3435 mg m-3. A dynamics model was developed to describe the relation of the removal efficiency with SED and initial concentration.