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Putting electronic cigarettes to the test
Date:12/7/2012

air for a considerable time", says Dr. Tobias Schripp, scientist at Fraunhofer WKI and co-author of the study.

No formaldehyde emissions detected

The Fraunhofer experts conducted a series of test chamber measurements to analyze emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), ultrafine particles and formaldehyde, with particular emphasis on the quantity, concentration and distribution of particles. Tests were conducted using volunteers in an 8-cubic-meter test chamber, where conventional cigarettes were compared with e-cigarettes containing a variety of liquids. To ascertain how the distribution of particles develops over a number of minutes, and the amount of propylene glycol released in the longer term, the vapor was in addition pumped directly into a 10-liter glass chamber. This test was performed on different types of e-cigarette, all containing the same liquid. "In general, the emissions of VOCs and ultrafine particles when smoking an e-cigarette were lower than the equivalent emissions from a standard cigarette", says Schripp. Furthermore, the researcher and his team were not able to detect any formaldehyde emissions from the e-cigarette. Conventional cigarettes, on the other hand, exceeded the guideline value of 0.1 ppm (parts per million) for indoor air quality under the given test conditions. Vaporized propylene glycol was released into the air from both electronic and tobacco cigarettes, as it is also often used as an additive in tobacco. Pulmonologists fear that this solubilizing agent can irritate the airways when inhaled in large quantities. "While it is true that the electronic cigarette contributes less to indoor air pollution than tobacco cigarettes, it is not entirely emission-free. Consequently, it seems reasonable to assume that bystanders are exposed to the released vapor and thus 'passive vaping' is possible", says Schripp, summing up the results of his measurements. He also criticizes the product labeling strategy, which in
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Contact: Dr. Tobias Schripp
tobias.schripp@wki.fraunhofer.de
49-531-215-5249
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

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