Smart Wearables Market to Boom as Researchers Develop a Wearable Device that can monitor Nicotine Levels for E-Cigarette Smokers

Posted On December 22, 2021     

Nicotine, an addictive chemical found in electronic cigarettes, has been demonstrated in studies to raise the risk of cardiovascular and respiratory problems. But to acquire a comprehensive grasp of its possible health impacts, a real-time nicotine monitoring gadget is needed. Vapers and non-vapers who come into contact with second-hand smoke could benefit from such a device.

Researchers have now developed a battery-free, wearable device to manage this task. The device detects a change in conductivity, amplifies the signal, and sends it to a smartphone through Bluetooth. According to researchers, the technique increases the usage of wearable electronics for real-time monitoring of harmful compounds in the environment, which may also transform the Smart Wearables Market.

E-cigarettes essentially work by heating and aerosolizing a mixture of propylene glycol, glycerine, nicotine and other flavoring additives, which the user then inhales. This mixture can impact a variety of organs in the body, including the respiratory system, where it affects airflow, increases oxidative stress, and lowers immunity. Nicotine also has the potential to cause lung cancer. However, determining that exposure in real-world circumstances has proven problematic.

Current tests assessing ambient nicotine levels are performed in laboratories and necessitate many sample volumes. Further, they also require days to weeks for sampling itself. As an alternative, portable nicotine sensors are being developed. However, the two have been reported as unsuitable because they rely on sweat or sunlight to function.

As a result, researchers set out to create a small, wearable sensor that could detect nicotine in real-time and relay data wirelessly to electronic devices like smartphones.

The team built their vanadium dioxide (VO2) sensor on a polyimide substrate. They demonstrated that nicotine might bind covalently to a thin film of VO2, changing the film's conductivity to a degree dependent on nicotine concentration.

According to the researchers, this method widens the utility of wearable electronics for monitoring harmful compounds in the environment in real-time. It would be a great addition to smart health care technology, helping smokers assess their health. It might also promote non-smoking as people see their deteriorating health with each vape. Furthermore, even non-smokers who only come in contact with second-hand smoke would be aware of the health hazards posed by such incidents, thus getting timely treatment or medical counsel on how to change their lifestyle.

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