Like gunpowder, the e-cigarette is a Chinese invention. The first ones came from the Ruyan company in 2004. According to media reports, Ruyan says it sold 300,000 e-cigarettes in 2008, and it’s far from the only company making the devices.
The e-cigarette comes in many shapes and sizes. Many look more or less like long cigarettes; others look like cigars or pipes. They all work the same basic way –
- The user inhales through a mouthpiece.
- Air flow triggers a sensor that switches on a small, battery-powered heater.
- The heater vaporizes liquid nicotine in a small cartridge (it also activates a light at the “lit” end of the e-cigarette). Users can opt for a cartridge without nicotine.
- The heater also vaporizes propylene glycol (PEG) in the cartridge. PEG is the stuff of which theatrical smoke is made.The user gets a puff of hot gas that feels a lot like tobacco smoke.
- When the user exhales, there’s a cloud of PEG vapor that looks like smoke. The vapor quickly dissipates.
- E-cigarettes contain no tobacco products; even the nicotine is synthetic.
- Inhaling on an e-cigarette and the resulting buzzy satisfaction can vary greatly depending on the brand used, the nicotine content of the liquid, and the user’s tolerance. My brand of choice as of late has been the Logic rechargeable with refills. On a typical week I’ll go through about five refill cartridges of “extra high” nicotine volume, which I suppose would put me at about just over two packs a day if worked out to regular cigarettes.
- When I was smoking cigarettes, I would smoke maybe a half pack a day. But I’m not convinced I’m getting more nicotine per day puffing on e-cigarettes than I would if I were smoking cigarettes.
- This is because my e-cigarette inhaling habits vary wildly and I suspect the nicotine levels also vary from e-cig to e-cig and refill to refill. It is easy to suck on one of these things all day, like an adult pacifier. It’s also easy to take inconsistent drags, and each brand has a different draw. Also, the lower the battery the harder you have to draw on the e-cig to get a proper hit.
Have a look at the reference links now –