Myths About E-Cigarettes

Myths About E-Cigarettes

Myths About E-Cigarettes

I personally think E-cigs are great but advocates tout that e-cigarette are a clean alternative to old-fashioned tobacco, one that can even help people quit smoking. But although the companies making these largely unregulated products promote e-cigarettes as safe and pure, the reality is a little more complicated. Here are four common misconceptions about e-cigarettes, and the scientific evidence against them.

Myth 1: Vapor from e-cigs is pure.

The liquid “vaped” in an e-cigarette contains nicotine, water and a solvent (usually glycerine or propylene glycol). It may also contain flavoring agents, such as oil of wintergreen. Although this mixture may sound pure enough, neither the liquid (called the e-liquid) nor the device’s delivery system are regulated; this means e-cigarettes could produce harmful chemicals.

In fact, recent studies have identified impurities ranging from formaldehyde to heavy metals in e-cig vapor. And vaporized propylene glycol is a known eye and respiratory irritant.

One recent study found formaldehyde, acetaldehyde and acetone in the vapor of several different e-cigarette models and liquid nicotine products found formaldehyde, acetaldehyde and acetone. “We found nicotine, of course, but we also found some potentially dangerous compounds,” said study researcher Maciej Goniewicz, an assistant professor of oncology at Roswell Park Cancer Center in Buffalo, New York.

What’s more, users can amp up the voltage of an e-cig delivery device, resulting in a denser, more nicotine-rich vapor. Goniewicz and his team found that at a higher voltage and hotter temperature, levels of harmful chemicals increased, too.

The vapor had a lower chemical content than tobacco smoke, but there was “huge variability” among the products tested, Goniewicz told Live Science. “It doesn’t mean that each product will expose users to high levels of formaldehyde, but there is a risk for sure,” he said.

Myth 2: E-cigs are safe.

In addition to potential toxicity from chemical byproducts, which could harm users over the long term, e-cigs carry another safety risk. Liquid nicotine is extremely toxic when swallowed, and in some case reports, infants and children have accidentally ingested the substance.

The chances of this happening may increase with flavored liquid nicotine, which may come in enticing-looking packages and can smell tempting, according to new research.

“It mistakenly has this reputation for being safe because it’s purchased over the counter, but it easily can be fatal if it’s taken in high doses,” said Dr. Robert A. Bassett, a medical toxicologist and emergency medicine physician at Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia. Bassett and his colleagues reported a case of liquid nicotine poisoning in a 10-month-old infant in the May 7 issue of JAMA.

The boy recovered within a few hours, but nicotine poisoning could easily be fatal, Bassett said. A teaspoon of standard liquid nicotine would be enough to kill a person who weighs 200 pounds (90 kilograms), Bassett and his colleagues noted in their report.

Myth 3: E-cigs can help you quit smoking.

The few studies looking at whether or not using e-cigs helps people kick the habit have had mixed results. Some studies have found people who tried e-cigs wound up smoking fewer regular cigarettes, but they were no more likely to give up smoking entirely.

Overall, the authors of a recent scientific review conclude, “studies that reflect real-world e-cigarette use found that e-cigarette use is not associated with successful quitting … Taken together, the studies suggest that e-cigarettes are not associated with successful quitting in general population-based samples of smokers.”

And there is even some evidence that e-cigs may get non-smokers hooked on nicotine. Studies have found as many as one-third of young e-cigarette users have never tried conventional cigarettes.

Myth 4: E-cigs don’t produce harmful second-hand smoke.

A main selling point of e-cigs is that they can be used anywhere, because they don’t produce toxic smoke that puts others at risk. But breathing in second-hand vapor,  also known as “passive vaping,” may not be harmless. In fact, experts say although The level of toxic chemicals in second-hand vapor is smaller than that in second-hand smoke. But experts say e-cig smoke contains a similar amount of tiny particles of heavy metals and other substances that can damage the lungs.

The Food and Drug Administration has proposed a rule that would permit the agency to regulate e-cigarettes and similar products. If the proposal becomes final, the agency said, it will be able to use regulatory tools, such as age restrictions and rigorous scientific review of new tobacco products and claims to reduce tobacco-related disease and death.



Exotic Chemicals from Salt

Exotic Chemicals from Salt:


Exotic Chemicals from Salt

Exotic Chemicals from Salt


Almost everything around you is made of elements that scientists have studied in some detail in the last 200 years. This understanding breaks when elements are subjected to high pressure and temperature . Using an advanced theoretical understanding and extreme conditions , researchers have become the exotic chemical table salt .

Salt is made of one part sodium and one part bleach . If somehow the salt were transported to the center of the Earth , where the pressure is three million times the surface , crystalline structure would change, but the ratio of these two elements would remain the same .

Vitali Prakapenka at the University of Chicago and colleagues wanted to find out what happens if there were an excess of sodium or chlorine at such high pressures. Could you change the relationship between the elements? ” Could ” Prakapenka said, “because the chemical changes completely in those conditions. ” Doing so , the result would not only be the formation of a new compound, but a serious review of what we think about chemistry.

Elemental behavior changes in such high pressures. For example , the oxygen molecules which usually contain two atoms , are decomposed into the increased pressure , and the element forms a box eight atom . Raising the pressure a little about 300,000 atmospheres, and begins to superconduct . Chemists are trying to develop chemicals that exhibit similar properties, but are stable under normal conditions – learn about these exotic compounds can help achieve that goal.

Sodium chloride (ie , table salt ) is a different beast . It is linked in a one -on-one by very strong ionic bonds . However, calculations by Artem Organov Prakapenka colleague at the State University of New York at Stony Brook said that even sodium chloride could be twisted to produce exotic chemicals. These calculations were given precise pressures to which , in presence of an excess of sodium or chlorine , salt may be transformed.

Calculations showed that NaCl3 , Na3Cl , Na2Cl , Na3Cl2 and NaCl7 could all be stable at pressures ranging from 20GPa to 142GPa , where 1GPa is about 10,000 atmospheres of pressure . Physicists high pressure have many models to predict the behavior of the elements in extreme conditions, but rarely the models agree with experiment .

Notably his calculations withstood the test of experiment in at least two cases : Na3Cl and NaCl3 . To run an experiment of this type , a device called luxury diamond anvil cell is needed. The chemicals are added between two diamonds, which can be compressed to produce pressures up to 300GPa . This is what Prakapenka colleague used to Na3Cl and NaCl3 , structures were verified by Prakapenka by X-ray analysis .

” Nobody thought this could happen , given how strong the bond is between sodium and chlorine ,” said Prakapenka . ” What we have shown is that the theory can be translated into the experiment, which is often not the case in the physics of high pressure.”

Malcolm McMahon, professor of physics at high pressure in the University of Edinburgh , said : . “These are amazing results , and are guided by the remarkable theoretical predictions Without tools like that have been built , would not have thought that the sodium chloride could be changed in this way. ”

It may not have any immediate application of the results. Instead , researchers have opened the door for scientists to begin probing other chemicals in the hope of making exotic combinations that can remain stable at room temperature. Diamonds are a good example . In nature , formed in the interior of the Earth when carbon is subjected to extreme pressure. Once formed, they are stable even at ambient conditions. So there may be other similar materials to diamond we can do , there may be others that our current understanding of chemistry has even predicted.

Other implications are not terrestrial . Each planet in our Solar System and Beyond has a vast amount of extreme pressure material. For example , Jupiter is predicted to have metallic hydrogen , hydrogen where electrons are free to move at will. It is hoped that this material becomes a superconductor at room temperature. Understanding how the chemicals we know behave in such conditions would be vital for predicting conditions in the army are discovering exoplanets .

If nothing else, Prakapenka work shows that even something as simple as table salt can be successfully transformed – which means that we still have much to discover about the items we all know.