Titanate cigarette filter could be safer

May 04, 2011 by Deborah Braconnier report
Titanate cigarette filter could be safer

(PhysOrg.com) -- While current cigarettes are made with a filter created from cellulose acetate which absorbs things like nicotine, tar, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, Chinese researchers have discovered that nanomaterials from titanium dioxide (TiO2) can be used to reduce the harmful chemicals.

For many years, researchers have been looking at adding to current cigarette filters and have tried carbon nanotubes and mesoporous silica. These have worked well; however, they are expensive and like are known about possible health risks.

Mingdeng Wei, from Fuzhou University has teamed with colleagues at the Fujian Tobacco Industrial Corporation and has discovered that titanate nanotubes and nanoshets can be used to filter and greatly reduce the harmful effects. Nanomaterials can be easily synthesized with at a relatively inexpensive cost. Since TiO2 is currently on the market and found in products such as cosmetics, sunscreens, and even food, there is no possible health risk.

The team created both nanosheets and nanotubes to compare them when added to the tips of . Using a machine to smoke them and the use of high performance liquid chromatography and ion chromatography to measure the amount of captured chemicals, Wei and his team discovered that the tubes were twice as efficient as the sheets.

While their research is currently looking at the benefits of the TiO2 nanomaterials with cigarettes, their hope is it could also be used in other filtering devices such as air purification systems and gas masks.

Explore further: Scientists fabricate defect-free graphene, set record reversible capacity for Co3O4 anode in Li-ion batteries

More information: Significant reduction of harmful compounds in tobacco smoke by the use of titanate nanosheets and nanotubes, Qixin Deng, Chaozhang Huang, Wei Xie, Jianping Zhang, Yiqiang Zhao, Zhensheng Hong, Aiying Pang and Mingdeng Wei, Chemical Communications, 2011, Advance Article DOI: 10.1039/C1CC10794A

Abstract
Titanate nanosheets and nanotubes have first been introduced into cigarette filter, a great range of harmful compounds including tar, nicotine, ammonia, hydrogen cyanide, selected carbonyls and phenolic compounds can be reduced efficiently.

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whalio
4 / 5 (5) May 04, 2011
If the FDA would quit attempting to ban the use of electronic cigarettes people would slowly make the switch from real cigs to the e-cigs. Thanks Big Tobacco for paying off the FDA and spending millions a year lobbying.

Why have a safeR cigarette when you can have a totally safe e-cigarette?
El_Nose
2.6 / 5 (5) May 04, 2011
i guess you haven't read the studies that e-cigs are just as life threatening ?? You are not exhaling water vapor there buddy it's smoke and smoke is harmful - and the chemical dissolved in that smoke might not be of the same quality as a real cig but chain smoking e-cigs is not a good idea either...

when will people accept that inhaling smoke is not what the lungs were meant to do? why have a cigarette when natural air is armful enough

and i am sorry the logic that since it currently being used in a lot of items that it cannot be a health risk is silly. Yes it's macroscopic form has not caused any big problems -- but show me the study where they pulverized it into a powder and had people inhale it -- or in this case made it small enough to go through a cell membrane and inhale it -- give me a ten year study on that and I will be convinced - because that would be science

this reeks of a company trying to get a return on a research investment
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (3) May 04, 2011
Why have a safeR cigarette when you can have a totally safe e-cigarette?
If all cigarettes are unsafe, why smoke at all?

And I'm a smoker. It's a horrible vice.
Skeptic_Heretic
3.7 / 5 (3) May 04, 2011
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that_guy
4 / 5 (4) May 04, 2011
Seriously guys? You're ruining perfectly good points on a science site?

@Whalio - There is some research that indicates the e-cigs are not necessarily completely safe. Although some of the problems will be worked out, the jury is still out on the propolyne glycol - long term effects of being inhaled, and of course some people have a sensetivity to it.

@El Nose. It is definitely not smoke, please know the most basic thing about what you are talking about before throwing out an argument. This is not a tea party forum where you can get away with that. It is a vapor - an atomized liquid.
Newbeak
5 / 5 (1) May 04, 2011
Seriously guys? You're ruining perfectly good points on a science site?

@Whalio - There is some research that indicates the e-cigs are not necessarily completely safe. Although some of the problems will be worked out, the jury is still out on the propolyne glycol - long term effects of being inhaled, and of course some people have a sensetivity to it.

@El Nose. It is definitely not smoke, please know the most basic thing about what you are talking about before throwing out an argument. This is not a tea party forum where you can get away with that. It is a vapor - an atomized liquid.

Thanks,that guy.I tried posting this link a while ago,but it didn't appear: http://en.wikiped...igarette
Newbeak
5 / 5 (2) May 04, 2011
Why have a safeR cigarette when you can have a totally safe e-cigarette?
If all cigarettes are unsafe, why smoke at all?

And I'm a smoker. It's a horrible vice.

Because it's a matter of risk reduction,and this new filter might do that.E-cigarettes are probably even safer,but yes,the best course of action would be to quit.The problem is,as you are no doubt aware,is that smoking is a tough addiction to beat.I used to smoke,and quit in 79.It took over 5 attempts,but I'm glad it did it.
whalio
5 / 5 (1) May 04, 2011
http://en.wikiped...ications

Sorry guys, I didn't mean to anger anyone. I'm going to be honest here, I'm 100% addicted to nicotine. The health risks and cost of "analog" cigarettes forced me to seek other alternatives. I can say that I've successfully quit smoking and using chewing tobacco. Granted I only replaced the addiction with a healthier alternative.

However, being the slight conspiracy theorist that I am, I still think the FDA is in Big Tobacco's pocket, they're so intent on getting the e-cig banned that it makes me wonder why they don't go after tobacco in general. They've already lost 2 lawsuits, withdrew a third, and caused the UK equivalent of the FDA to withdraw their lawsuit as well. I figure if Propolyne Glycol can be used in various medicinal capacities(including moisturizers!) I'm really hoping that it's ok to vaporize it and inhale it into my lungs. Sure beats choking down all those other chemical compounds found in "analogs".
krundoloss
5 / 5 (1) May 04, 2011
They should just put Chantix in the cigarettes to make everyone quit. Or maybe some synthetic drug that is not addictive but mimics the affects of nicotine. Then all the farmers can grow food instead of tobacco!
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 04, 2011
They should just put Chantix in the cigarettes to make everyone quit. Or maybe some synthetic drug that is not addictive but mimics the affects of nicotine. Then all the farmers can grow food instead of tobacco!

Chantix doesn't make you quit, it occupies the positions that nicotine would otherwise occupy. It blocks the effects of nicotine use to an extent based on dosage. This helps break the psychological addiction while you self-address the physical addiction. If you perform the action and do not receive the 'reward' your brain will quickly reduce the perceived 'need' for the action.
Newbeak
5 / 5 (1) May 04, 2011
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propylene_glycol#Applications

Sorry guys, I didn't mean to anger anyone.

Hey,man,I'm not angry,but I am not a conspiracist either.FDA is mandated to protect the public health,even if what they're testing is,according to common sense,less harmful that smoking tobacco.
that_guy
1 / 5 (1) May 04, 2011
@whalio

Agreed that propylene glycol has the potential to be much safer - ingested it is normally safe, although can be toxic at high levels. But inhaling it is a different vector, which is more unknown on health affects, and is known to cause respiratory distress and eye irritation among some people - with fog machines for example.

Normally I hate conspiracy theory BS, but I take no issue with your conspiracy theory stand here, as the conspiracy theory facts in this case are more or less demonstrably true.

My main issue was that you called e-cigs completely safe, when that is almost definitely false (Nicotine is toxic in itself), although I agree that ecigs are almost definitely to be proved much much safer than regular cigs.
that_guy
1 / 5 (1) May 04, 2011
Excellent debate by the way - you guys should all star up the arguments you like.
Megadeth312
4.5 / 5 (2) May 04, 2011
Why have a safeR cigarette when you can have a totally safe e-cigarette?
If all cigarettes are unsafe, why smoke at all?

And I'm a smoker. It's a horrible vice.


So very true.

I figure if its all unsafe, and your gonna do it anyway, you might as well enjoy it.
braindead
not rated yet May 05, 2011
Do they make passive smoking safer though?
stealthc
not rated yet May 05, 2011
no possible health effects? BS. Carbon nanotubes are not safe because they are made from carbon and I would never assume something like TiO2 is because it is made from titanium that is extremely poor logic, I see no study on health effects and they've put enough poison in my smokes I don't think I trust the authorities and the cigarette companies, those parasites want what is best for them, they could care less what is best for you and me.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 05, 2011
My main issue was that you called e-cigs completely safe, when that is almost definitely false (Nicotine is toxic in itself), although I agree that ecigs are almost definitely to be proved much much safer than regular cigs.
E-cigarettes are a free radical free way to inhale a complex steam of cancer causing agents. It's similar to using a vaporizer for marijuana. It is not as dangerous as combustion of plant material because it doesn't create as many free radicals and chemical irritants, bypassing the effectgs of COPD and emphyzema. Cancer is still a distinct reality.