Analyzing Cigarette Smoke.

The Science Teacher v.64 (December), 29-33, 1997.


Dan Jaffe, Dale Griffin and Janet Ricker


            Cigarette smoking is a major health concern in the U.S. and around the world.  Most smokers start smoking by age 15.  One approach to reducing the number of young people who start smoking is to provide them with direct visual, olfactory and quantitative data from which they can draw their own conclusions about smoking.  In this paper we present several methods to quantify and qualitatively identify the toxic compounds in cigarette smoke.  This type of approach also has a unique appeal among students in that it allows them to directly investigate something in science classes which is directly relevant to their lives.  Because of this, most students are very interested in these lab experiments.