A new deposition technique that builds on the thermal particle characteristics typical for e-beam deposition is described. This technique applies magnetron sputtering in a special scheme where these characteristics of the e-beam deposition method are achieved. The method was used for interface engineering of Mo/Si multilayers, with different barrier layer materials being tested. Composition of the barrier layers formed was studied using XPS. Results are shown on the general example of a Mo/B4C/Si/B4C system. The ultra-thin reflectance enhancement B4C barriers can be deposited with low added stress, resulting in a multilayer stress as low as about -150 MPa. The best interface engineered multilayers reflect 70.5% at 13.3 nm and 70.15% at 13.5 nm. These results were achieved with 50 period multilayers terminated with a standard Si layer.© (2007) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.