First the scientific explanation.
As temperature goes up, the molecules increase in thermal agitation manifested in linear motion and vibration. Regions that contain higher kinetic energy transfer the energy to regions with lower kinetic energy. Simply put, heat transfer can be grouped into three broad categories: conduction, convection, and radiation.
Now that we have given the scientific information on that lets relate this to Vaporizers and how Conduction and Convection.
The main difference between herb pens and portable vaporizers is the way in which they heat plant material. Pen-style units utilize a method called conduction by transferring heat directly from the heating coil to your herbs. As a result of making direct contact with the heat source, combustion occurs and smoke is produced.
An easy way to understand how conduction works is by simply picturing a cup of coffee. When hot coffee is poured into a ceramic mug, heat is transferred directly from the hot liquid to the cup, thus heating the mug and causing it to be warm to the touch. The mug is “conducting” the heat directly from the coffee itself.
In contrast, portable vaporizers employ a method called convection, which heats herbs placed in a chamber by passing and circulating heated air through them. During this method, the material being heated never comes into direct contact with the heating element, but is instead essentially “cooked”.
The simplest way to understand the principles of convection is to picture a hair dryer. The heating element inside of the hair dryer heats the air, which is then blown out and transferred from the hot air to your hair, which in turn heats and dries it. At no point does your hair ever come into direct contact with the heat source.
We will offer future articles on how this effects vaporizers in various categories being Home Use, Portables and Pen Wax and Oil Vaporizers.