The very first form of e-cigarette known to be patented was in the year 1963 by Herbett A. Gilbert. It was patented as a device which was better known by the name smokeless non-tobacco cigarette with a chief motive to replace usual tobacco which burns with paper when heated in the presence of moist and flavored air. The mechanics devised was fairly simple – it provided heat to the nicotine solution and hence, it produced steam. Though Gilbert was flooded with offer from many firms, the reason why it was not popular is that it never commercialized at that point of time and it diminished from the public record and their minds.
Though the concept of e-cigarette was brought in by Herbett, the credit of its invention goes to a Chinese pharmacist named “Hon Lik” in the year 2000. It is believed that the invention came after his father, who was a heavy-smoker, died of lung cancer. This time the idea was unique and different and hence, it brought to the world a class of e-cigarette, known today as the first generation of electronic cigarette. The idea was using a piezoelectric ultrasound-emitting element that used to pressurize a spurt of liquid consisting nicotine diluted in a propylene glycol solution. This combination produces a smoke-like vapour that can be inhaled and as a transport for nicotine delivery into the bloodstream via the lungs. A similar variant was also suggested in which propylene glycol was employed to encourage dilution of nicotine. That liquid was transferred to a disposable plastic cartridge that met the purpose of both a liquid reservoir and mouthpiece. This is the basic principle behind the success of current generation e-cigarettes.
The invention made by Lik was introduced by Golden Dragon Holdings (company he worked for) throughout the market of Beijing, China in the year 2004. The device was named Ruyan whose literal meaning was “like smoke”. E-Cigarette was then exported to Europe in the month of April, 2006 and then to the United States of America in the year 2007.
In March 2008, Turkey’s Health Ministry banned the sale and import of e-cigarettes on the claims of Health Ministry Drugs and Pharmacy Director that said electronic cigarettes were just as harmful as regular cigarettes. To add on to the complexity, the vice president of the Foundation Combating Smoking in Turkey claimed that “nicotine is the most dangerous element among 4,800 poisonous chemicals in cigarettes.” After the announcement of World Health Organisation (WHO), who said that they do not consider the electronic cigarette to be a legitimate smoking cessation aid and demanded that marketers must immediately remove them from their stock. Based on the reports of WHO, many major markets around the world banned the import of E-Cigarettes and stopped the sale. That took a major toll on the production and sale of E-Cigarettes and dented its image
In the Modern day world, E-Cigarette has been gaining the momentum slowly, but still it has got a lot of grounds to cover. The E-Smoking scam and other fraudulent activities online are the major hurdles. But the biggest challenge remains the same and that is many people still prefer the traditional form of smoking as they say “Old Habits Die Hard”.