Date of Thesis

5-6-2017

Thesis Type

Honors Thesis (Bucknell Access Only)

Degree Type

Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering

Department

Chemical Engineering

First Advisor

Dabrina Dutcher

Second Advisor

Timothy M. Raymond

Abstract

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are products that function as drug delivery devices, delivering nicotine and other chemicals to users. Their popularity has caused rapid market penetration throughout the world and specifically the United States. Unlike conventional cigarettes that deliver nicotine in smoke resulting from combustion of tobacco leaves, e-cigarettes operate by rapidly heating an e-liquid into gas containing particles, called an aerosol. Despite the increase in use, little is known about their safety and impact on public health. This research investigates how variables which alter e-cigarette usage affect the e-cigarette effluent particle sizes and ultimately impact public health. The location of particle deposition in the respiratory system, dependent on particle size, has wide-ranging effects on pharmacokinetics, involving how fast the body is able to absorb the chemicals of the aerosol. E-cigarette aerosol exposure is a major public health concern due to a particle's ability to infiltrate deeply into the human respiratory system and cell membranes. Understanding the particle size distribution of e-cigarette effluent will be propaedeutic to current and future research involving effluent evaluations and related pharmacological health effects. This thesis quantitatively addresses particle deposition in the respiratory system. Additionally, the results form the basis to help inform future policy decisions on regulation of e-cigarettes for the Food and Drug Administration.

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