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Components of the E-cigarette

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2011 3:52 pm    Post subject: Components of the E-cigarette Reply with quote

While electronic cigarettes take many forms, they usually consist of three common components: a mouthpiece ("cartridge"), a heating element ("atomizer"), and a "battery" unit that houses the actual battery and electronic logic board. Some designs implement an integrated cartridge/atomizer component referred to by some companies as a "cartomizer".

Mouthpiece ("cartridge")The mouthpiece is usually a small disposable plastic container with openings on each end. It often houses an absorbent, sponge-like material saturated with the liquid solution to be vaporized. The mouthpiece is constructed so that the vapor produced can flow past the solution container and reach the user's mouth.

When the liquid in the cartridge has been depleted, the user can generally choose between refilling it, or replacing it with another pre-filled cartridge.

As an alternative to the traditional plastic mouthpiece, some manufacturers have created dedicated mouthpieces just for dripping, such as Super-T manufacturing's stainless steel T-Tip drip tip.Some users forgo the use of cartridges and "drip" liquid directly onto the atomizer, in a method that has aptly come to be known as "dripping". Some manufacturers have responded to this previously unintended off-label use by creating special mouthpieces that are intended primarily to ease use by the dripping method.

Heating element ("atomizer")The heating element serves to vaporize the solution so it can be inhaled. This component is referred to in the industry as an "atomizer". Atomizers contain filaments that tend to "burn out" after varying periods of time, requiring periodic replacement, creating one of the primary recurring expenses associated with electronic cigarettes.

Battery and electronics
An electronic cigarette battery connected to a USB charger.The housing for the battery and logic board is usually the largest component of an electronic cigarette. It is generally referred to simply as the "battery".[citation needed] This unit may contain an electronic airflow sensor for automated operation, or a button for manual operation. A timed cutoff switch (to prevent overheating) and/or a colored LED may also be included here.

Most electronic cigarettes use a lithium-ion rechargeable battery to power the heating element. Battery life varies depending on the battery type and size, frequency of use, and operating environment.

A PCC for electronic cigarettes.To recharge their batteries, many different types of battery chargers, such as AC outlet, car, and USB chargers, are available. Some manufacturers also offer a "Personal Charging Case," or "PCC",[citation needed] which contains a large rechargeable battery that is then used to charge a smaller battery within the individual e-cigarettes.

LiquidsLiquids used to produce vapor in electronic cigarettes are widely sold separately for use in refillable cartridges. Liquid is commonly known as "nicotine solution" when it contains the actual nicotine component.[citation needed] Liquids are also sometimes referred to as "e-liquid", "e-juice", etc. in keeping with the "e-" nomenclature. Liquids commonly contain some amount of flavoring, with hundreds of different flavors available. Some flavor varieties attempt to resemble traditional cigarette types, such as regular tobacco and menthol, and some even attempt to mimic specific cigarette brands, such as Marl. or Camel. Fruit and other flavors, such as chocolate, vanilla, caramel, coffee, and cola, are also available.

Liquid solution consists of flavoring and/or nicotine dissolved in propylene glycol or vegetable glycerin, commonly referred to as PG and VG respectively. Both are common food additives. Since concerns have been raised by various opponent groups regarding the safety of inhaling these substances, it has been pointed out by proponents that PG has been used as an additive in asthma inhalers and nebulizers since the 1950s, with no serious adverse side effects, and because of its water-retaining properties, is the compound of choice for delivering atomized medication. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) includes propylene glycol on its list of substances Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS), and it meets the requirements of acceptable compounds within Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Liquid solutions containing nicotine are available in differing nicotine concentrations to suit user preferences. Concentrations range from zero nicotine, to low/midrange doses (6–8 mg/ml and 10–14 mg/ml respectively), to high and extra-high doses (16–18 mg/ml and 24–36 mg/ml respectively). Nicotine concentration ratings are often printed on the liquid container or cartridge (the standard notation "mg/ml" is often abbreviated simply as "mg").[2]

Below are some of the different liquid solution compositions available:[3]

Substance Recipe 1 Recipe 2 Recipe 3 Recipe 4 Recipe 5
Propylene glycol 85% 80% 90% 80% <65%
Nicotine 1.6% 2.4% 3.2% 0.1% <3%
Glycerol 2% 5% - 5% <20%
Tobacco essence - 4% 4.5% 1% <5%
Essence 2% - 1% 1% <5%
Organic acid 1% - - 2% <1%
Anti-oxidation agent 1% - - - -
Butyl valerate - 1% - - -
Isopentyl hexonate - 1% - - -
Lauryl laurate – 0.6% – – –
Benzyl benzoate – 0.4% – – –
Methyl octynicate – 0–5% – – –
Ethyl heptylate – 0.2% – – –
Hexyl hexanoate – 0.3% – – –
Geranyl butyrate – 2% – – –
Menthol – 0.5% – – –
Citric acid – 0.5% 2.5% – –
Water – – – 2.9% <10%
Alcohol - - - 8% -
2,3,5-Trimethylpyrazine - - - - <1%
2,3,5,6-Tetramethylpyrazine - - - - <1%
2,3-Dimethylpyrazine - - - - <1%
Acetylpyrazine - - - - <1%
Terpineol - - - - <1%
Ethyl maltol - - - - <1%
Guaiacol - - - - <1%
Acetylpyridine - - - - <1%
Octalactone - - - - <1%

The contents of a commonly imported tobacco flavored liquid from China.

Scientific Name CAS 6 mg Core 11 mg Core 16 mg Core
Megastigmatrienone 13215-88-8 14.00% 14.00% 14.00%
Beta-Damascenone 23696-85-7 12.00% 12.00% 12.00%
G2-Acetylpyrazine 22047-25-2 0.10% 0.10% 0.10%
2,5-Dimethyl pyrazine 123-32-0 0.20% 0.20% 0.20%
1,3-Propanediol 57-55-6 68.10% 67.60% 67.10%
L-Nicotine 54-11-5 0.60% 1.10% 1.60%
Linalool 11-05-54 5.00% 5.00% 5.00%

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Numbers
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