How does a smoke machine work?

How does a smoke machine actually work? I mean the type of modern machines that use smoke fluid.

It has a heater element, the liquid burns when it hits the heater, and makes smoke. Press the trigger, and liquid flows into the heater element. Simple enough.

FYI, the typical “fogger” is about the exact same design as commercial insectiside foggers. I know because I used to apply pesticides with one, and I also saw someone on a movie set with a smoke-making fogger and it was the same model I used.

The Fog Juice doesn’t actually burn, just turns into gas, I believe.

The stuff smells righteously narsty. I, as a techie, was always impressed that the actors could breathe the stuff for hours and not vomit.

Does anybody know what temperature is required in the heater?

I’ve heard that there are some health questions associated with the stuff and that the actors are not too happy with its use.

I have a fog/smoke machine at home and I find that the first few blasts have a bad smell but after that it is ok.

So I always blast some outside befor using it inside.

I think you’re right, I should have said “vaporize” instead of “burn.”

And of course, there are more modern fog generators that use CO2 instead.