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Cigarette filters are usually made from cellulose acetate fibre  , but sometimes also from paper or activated charcoal either as a cavity filter or embedded into the cellulose acetate. Cellulose acetate is made by esterifying bleached cotton or wood pulp with acetic acid. Of the three cellulose hydroxy groups available for esterification, between two and three are esterified by controlling the amount of acid degree of substitution DS 2.
The ester is spun into fibers and formed into bundles called filter tow. Flavors menthol , sweeteners , softeners triacetin , flame retardants sodium tungstate , breakable capsules releasing flavors on demand, and additives colouring the tobacco smoke may be added to cigarette filters. Starch glues or emulsion-based adhesives are used for gluing cigarette seams. Hot-melt and emulsion-based adhesives are used for filter seams. Emulsion-based adhesives are used for bonding the filters to the cigarettes.
The tobacco industry determined that the illusion of filtration was more important than filtration itself. It added chemicals in the filter so that its colour becomes darker when exposed to smoke it was invented in by Claude Teague working for R. Reynolds Tobacco Company. In the s epidemiologic evidence relative to tobacco-related cancers and data for coronary heart disease indicated a reduced risk among filter smokers for these diseases. Various add-on cigarette filters "Water Pik", "Venturi", "David Ross" are sold as stop-smoking or tar-reduction devices.
The idea is that filters reduce tar-nicotine levels permitting the smoker to be weaned away from cigarettes. The tobacco industry has reduced tar and nicotine yields in cigarette smoke since the s. This has been achieved in a variety of ways including use of selected strains of tobacco plant, changes in agricultural and curing procedures, use of reconstituted sheets reprocessed tobacco leaf wastes , incorporation of tobacco stalks, reduction of the amount of tobacco needed to fill a cigarette by expanding it like puffed wheat to increase its "filling power", and by the use of filters and high-porosity wrapping papers.
However, just as a drinker tends to drink a larger volume of beer than of wine or spirits, so many smokers tend to modify their smoking pattern inversely according to the strength of the cigarette being smoked. In contrast to the standardized puffing of the smoking machines on which the tar and nicotine yields are based, when a smoker switches to a low-tar, low nicotine cigarette, they smoke more cigarettes, take more puffs and inhale more deeply.
Conversely, when smoking a high-tar, high-nicotine cigarette there is a tendency to smoke and inhale less. In spite of the changes in cigarette design and manufacturing over the last 50 years, the use of filters and "light" cigarettes neither decreased the nicotine intake per cigarette, nor lowered the incidence of lung cancers NCI , ; IARC 83, ; U. Surgeon General, That is, the percentage of lung cancers that are adenocarcinomas has increased, while the percentage of squamous cell cancers has decreased.
The change in tumor type is believed to reflect the higher nitrosamine delivery of lower-yield cigarettes and the increased depth or volume of inhalation of lower-yield cigarettes to compensate for lower level concentrations of nicotine in the smoke. Cellulose acetate is non-toxic, odorless, tasteless, and weakly flammable. It is resistant to weak acids and is largely stable to mineral and fatty oils as well as petroleum.
Smoked i. Smoked cigarette butts and cigarette tobacco are toxic to water organisms such as the marine topsmelt Atherinops affinis and the freshwater fathead minnow Pimephales promelas. Atmospheric moisture , gastric acid , light , and enzymes hydrolyze cellulose acetate to acetic acid and cellulose. Cellulose may be further hydrolyzed to cellobiose or glucose in an acidic medium, and eventually form valuable humus.
Humans cannot digest cellulose and excrete the fibers in feces, because, unlike ruminant animals, rabbits , rodents , termites , and some bacteria and fungi, they lack cellulolytic enzymes such as cellulase. Cigarette butts are the most common form of anthropogenic man-made litter in the world, as approximately 5.
Much of this work relies heavily on the research about the secondary mechanism for photodegradation as stated above. However, making a product biodegradable means making it vulnerable to humidity and heat, which does not suit well filters made for hot and humid smoke. It may even be possible to ban the sale of filtered cigarettes altogether on the basis of their adverse environmental impact.
Recent research has been put into finding ways to utilizes the filter waste in order to develop other products. One research group in South Korea have developed a simple one-step process that converts the cellulose acetate in discarded cigarette filters into a high-performing material that could be integrated into computers, handheld devices, electrical vehicle and wind turbines to store energy.
These materials have demonstrated superior performance as compared to commercially available carbon, graphene and carbon nano tubes. The product is showing high promise as a green alternative for the waste problem. Once wet enough the tablets will release acid that accelerates degradation to around two weeks instead of using cellulose triacetate and besides of cigarette smoke being quite acidic.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Cigarette filter Imitation cork tip paper Cigarette paper Tobacco. Colour change. The cigarette smoking public attaches great significance to visual examination of the filter material in filter tip cigarettes after smoking the cigarettes. A before and after smoking visual comparison is usually made and if the filter tip material, after smoking, is darkened, the tip is automatically judged to be effective.
While the use of such colour change material would probably have little or no effect on the actual efficiency of the filter tip material, the advertising and sales advantages are obvious. Main article: Health effects of tobacco. This article needs more medical references for verification or relies too heavily on primary sources , specifically: out-of-date sources, does not reflect the balance of evidence. Please review the contents of the article and add the appropriate references if you can.
Unsourced or poorly sourced material may be challenged and removed. Main article: Ventilated cigarette. The New York Times. Retrieved Tobacco Control. Archived from the original on August 24, Check for butts. Chairs and sofas can catch fire fast and burn fast. Don't set ashtrays on them. Never smoke in bed! To prevent a deadly fire, put your cigarette out before you go to bed. Never smoke where oxygen is used even if it is turned off.
Oxygen can be explosive and makes fire burn hotter and faster. Fire-safe cigarettes are less likely to cause a fire. These cigarettes have banded paper that can slow the burn of a cigarette that isn't being used. Fire Info for You Employees Read this fact sheet on smoking and home fires. Learn more about smoking safely. Park Leadership Ensure that there are fire-safe ashtrays at designated smoking areas. Check out this roadmap for how to institute a smoke-free policy in a multi-unit building.
Take Action If you are a smoker or live with a smoker, these action items are for you: Watch this short video about smoking safety. Download this fact sheet about safe smoking tips. Ensure that you have adequate and functioning smoke detectors.
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