We report the use of a novel plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition chamber with coaxial electrode geometry for the SiOx deposition. This novel plasma setup exploits the diffusion of electrons through the inner most electrode to the interior samples space as the major energy source. This configuration enables a gentle treatment of sensitive materials like low-density polyethylene foils and biodegradable materials. SiOx coatings deposited in the novel setup were compared with other state of the art plasma coatings and were found to possess equally good or better barrier properties. The barrier effect of single-layer coatings deposited under different reaction conditions was studied. The coating thickness and the carbon content in the coatings were found to be the critical parameters for the barrier property. The novel barrier coating was applied on different polymeric materials, and it increased the barrier property of the modified low-density polyethylene, polyethylene terephthalate, and polylactide by 96.48%, 99.69%, and 99.25%, respectively. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2010
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