(19)
(11)EP 3 298 913 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
04.11.2020 Bulletin 2020/45

(21)Application number: 17179975.2

(22)Date of filing:  06.07.2017
(51)International Patent Classification (IPC): 
A24F 47/00(2020.01)
A24F 15/18(2006.01)

(54)

CASE FOR AN ELECTRONIC SMOKING DEVICE

GEHÄUSE FÜR EINE ELEKTRONISCHE RAUCHVORRICHTUNG

BOÎTIER POUR UN DISPOSITIF À FUMER ÉLECTRONIQUE


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 06.09.2016 EP 16187489
06.09.2016 EP 16187508
06.09.2016 EP 16187504
06.09.2016 EP 16187476
14.09.2016 EP 16188833
14.09.2016 EP 16188830
14.09.2016 EP 16188839
14.09.2016 EP 16188825

(43)Date of publication of application:
28.03.2018 Bulletin 2018/13

(60)Divisional application:
19167573.5 / 3536175

(73)Proprietor: Fontem Holdings 2 B.V.
1083 HN Amsterdam (NL)

(72)Inventors:
  • Beer, Andreas
    85630 Grasbrunn (DE)
  • Biel, Stefan
    22761 Hamburg (DE)

(74)Representative: Gulde & Partner 
Patent- und Rechtsanwaltskanzlei mbB Wallstraße 58/59
10179 Berlin
10179 Berlin (DE)


(56)References cited: : 
EP-A1- 3 040 095
WO-A1-2015/171185
WO-A1-2016/169119
US-A1- 2015 245 654
US-A1- 2016 150 824
EP-A2- 3 143 884
WO-A1-2016/096337
US-A1- 2014 020 697
US-A1- 2016 101 909
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    FIELD OF INVENTION



    [0001] The present invention relates generally to a case for electronic smoking devices and in particular to electronic cigarettes.

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION



    [0002] An electronic smoking device, such as an electronic cigarette (e-cigarette), typically has a housing accommodating an electric power source unit (e.g. a single use or rechargeable battery, electrical plug, or other power source), and an electrically operable atomizer. The atomizer vaporizes or atomizes liquid supplied from a reservoir and provides vaporized or atomized liquid as an aerosol. Control electronics control the activation of the atomizer. In some electronic cigarettes, an airflow sensor is provided within the electronic smoking device, which detects a user puffing on the device (e.g., by sensing an under-pressure or an airflow pattern through the device). The airflow sensor indicates or signals the puff to the control electronics to power up the device and generate vapor. In other e-cigarettes, a switch is used to power up the e-cigarette to generate a puff of vapor.

    [0003] Most electronic smoking devices are configured to be refilled when the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device is emptied. Often, a procedure for the refill of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device comprises a disassembling of the electronic smoking device in order to expose a refill opening of the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device. In most cases, a refill bottle is used to refill the liquid reservoir, wherein the refill bottles of the state of the art mostly comprise a simple pipette-like attachment or cap which shall allow for liquid to be transported from the refill bottle into the liquid reservoir via the refill opening.

    [0004] However, such refill bottles with attachments or caps like the aforementioned often cause liquid to spill during the refill procedure which can be perceived as highly inconvenient for the user of the electronic smoking device. Furthermore, when refilling the liquid reservoir, it is necessary to avoid dripping liquid into the air tube. Liquid that passes down the air tube into the atomizer may flood the atomizer and temporarily stops the device from working. When the device is then operated to clear the misplaced liquid, this often results in leakage as the misplaced liquid finds its way out of the atomizer through the air passage. Clearing the air passage is also often accompanied by a "gurgling" sound and sensation which users find unpleasant. Moreover, difficulties in refilling an electronic smoking device may cause users to miss the reservoir causing their fingers holding the electronic smoking device to come into contact with the liquid for atomization. Further liquid may spill from the reservoir prior to the mouthpiece of the device being re-attached closing the open end of the reservoir. Often liquid for atomization is relatively greasy and is impregnated with flavors which makes coming into contact unpleasant and undesirable as the liquid needs to be washed off and odors from the liquid may be retained on the hands. Furthermore, there is a risk that users may accidentally ingest the liquid if the liquid is not washed off.

    [0005] EP 3143884 A2 relates to electronic smoking devices having a refillable liquid reservoir.

    [0006] EP 3040095 A1 relates to a refillable atomizer including a housing, a receiving chamber defined in the housing, an atomizing unit arranged in the housing, and a deformable valve hermetically engaged in the liquid inlet.

    [0007] WO 2016/169119 A1 relates to top refillable electronic cigarettes.

    [0008] US2015/245654 A1 relates to a portable, personal storage and carrying case for an e-liquid e-cigarette.

    [0009] WO 2016/096337 A1 relates to a container for an aerosol generating device comprising receiving means for receiving the aerosol generating device.

    [0010] US 2016/101909 A1 relates to a container for an electronic nicotine delivery system. The container has a body having a pair of end walls spaced from each other by a base wall and the body also includes a recess extending between the end walls to receive an electronic nicotine delivery system.

    [0011] US 2016/150824 A1 relates to an e-cigarette PV that includes an air pressure valve or device so that excess air can escape from an e-liquid reservoir in the PV when that reservoir is being filled under pressure with e-liquid from a parent reservoir.

    [0012] WO 2015/171185 A1 relates to a portable packaging such as cases and containers for carrying components of electronic vaporizing devices.

    [0013] US 2014/020697 A1 relates to a wireless charging electronic cigarette case and an electronic cigarette device.

    SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION



    [0014] In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, there is provided a case for an electronic smoking device, the case comprising: a primary reception portion, adapted to receive an electronic smoking device, and a first and a second wing element, each comprising a substantially closed compartment and being hingedly connected to the primary reception portion respectively, wherein the wing elements are each pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion and adapted to fix an electronic smoking device arranged within the primary reception portion to the case.

    [0015] The characteristics, features and advantages of this invention and the manner in which they are obtained as described above, will become more apparent and be more clearly understood in connection with the following description of exemplary embodiments, which are explained with reference to the accompanying drawings.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0016] In the drawings, same element numbers indicate same elements in each of the views:

    Figure 1a is a schematic cross-sectional illustration of an exemplary electronic smoking device for an embodiment of a case;

    Figure 1b is a perspective view of the electronic smoking device shown in figure 1a;

    Figure 1c are further perspective views of the electronic smoking device shown in figures 1a and 1b;

    Figure 1d is a schematic cross-sectional illustration of the electronic smoking device shown in figures 1a, 1b and 1c and further illustrates the electrical components of the electronic smoking device;

    Figure 2 is a perspective view of an embodiment of a case in which the wing elements are in the first non-pivoted state;

    Figure 3a is a perspective view of the embodiment of the case in which the wing elements are in the second pivoted state;

    Figure 3b is a schematic front and side view of hinge elements of the case interacting with corresponding components of the wing elements of the case respectively;

    Figure 4 is a perspective view of the case as shown in figure 3a in which the electronic smoking device as shown in figures 1a, 1b, 1c and 1d is inserted into a primary reception portion of the case;

    Figure 5 is a perspective view of the embodiment of the case with the electronic smoking device as shown in figures 1a, 1b, 1c, 1d and 4 enclosed therein;

    Figure 6 is a perspective view of the embodiment of the case illustrating a (re)filling of the case with a liquid cartridge;

    Figure 7a to 7d is an illustration of a (re)filling process of the case being (re)filled with a liquid cartridge that is useable to (re)fill an electronic smoking device arranged within the case;

    Figure 8 is a schematic cross-sectional illustration of the embodiment of the case;

    Figure 9a is a perspective illustration of the embodiment of the case with the first wing element being detached, giving an insight into the primary reception portion of the case, wherein a refill interface element is in a removed position;

    Figure 9b is a perspective illustration of the embodiment of the case with the first wing element being detached, giving an insight into the primary reception portion of the case, wherein a refill interface element is in an insertion position;

    Figure 10 is a perspective back view of the embodiment of the case;

    Figure 11a and 11b is an illustration of the embodiment of the case in an optimal refill orientation;

    Figure 12 illustrates a set of predefined orientations of the embodiment of the case with respect to the optimal refill orientation of the case as shown in figure 11a and 11b;

    Figure 13 illustrates an operation method of the case with respect to the liquid refill system of the case and with respect to the refilling of a liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device received by the case;

    Figure 14a to 14c illustrate a first, a second and a third predefined icon displayable via the display unit of the case, and

    Figure 15a and 15b illustrate the use of data transmitted by the communication unit of the case to a mobile terminal device within the framework of an application running on the mobile terminal device.


    DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS



    [0017] Throughout the following, an electronic smoking device that can be used with an embodiment of a case described hereinafter will be exemplarily described with reference to an e-cigarette. As is shown in figure 1a, an e-cigarette 10 typically has a housing comprising a cylindrical hollow tube having an end cap 16. The cylindrical hollow tube may be a single-piece or a multiple-piece tube. In figure 1a, the cylindrical hollow tube is shown as a two-piece structure having a power supply portion 12 and an atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14. Together the power supply portion 12 and the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 form a cylindrical tube which can be approximately the same size and shape as a conventional cigarette, typically about 100 mm with a 7.5 mm diameter, although lengths may range from 70 to 150 or 180 mm, and diameters from 5 to 28 mm.

    [0018] The power supply portion 12 and atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 are typically made of metal, e.g. steel or aluminum, or of hardwearing plastic and act together with the end cap 16 to provide a housing to contain the components of the e-cigarette 10. The power supply portion 12 and an atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 may be configured to fit together by a friction push-fit, a snap-fit, or a bayonet attachment, magnetic-fit, or screw threads. The end cap 16 is provided at the front end of the power supply portion 12. The end cap 16 may be made from translucent plastic or other translucent material to allow a light-emitting diode (LED) 20 or an LED Maff Indicator positioned near the end cap to emit light through the end cap. The end cap can be made of metal or other materials that do not allow light to pass.

    [0019] An air inlet may be provided in the end cap, at the edge of the inlet next to the cylindrical hollow tube, anywhere along the length of the cylindrical hollow tube, or at the connection of the power supply portion 12 and the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14. Figure 1a shows a pair of air inlets 38 provided at the intersection between the power supply portion 12 and the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14. Furthermore, the electronic smoking device 10 comprises a plurality of further air inlets (see figure 1b) arranged close to the end cap 16. However, the air inlets 38 can also be arranged at a different position of the e-cigarette 10, e.g. located away from the intersection between the power supply portion 12 and the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14.

    [0020] A power source unit 18, preferably a battery 18, an LED 20, control electronics 22 and optionally an airflow sensor 24 are provided within the cylindrical hollow tube power supply portion 12. The power source unit 18 is electrically connected to the control electronics 22, which are electrically connected to the LED 20 and the airflow sensor 24. In this example, the LED 20 is at the front end of the power supply portion 12, adjacent to the end cap 16 and the control electronics 22 and the airflow sensor 24 are provided in the central cavity at the other end of the battery 18 adjacent to the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14.

    [0021] In this embodiment, the control electronics 22 exemplarily comprises a processing unit (not shown) and further circuitry adapted for a management of the components of the electronic smoking device 10. The processing unit further comprises a memory unit, adapted to store data and programs therein, the programs being executable via the processing unit. Moreover, the electronic smoking device 10 comprises an electrical interface portion (see figure 1b), which in this embodiment exemplarily has four electrical terminals (see figure 1b), allowing for an electrical connection of the electronic smoking device 10 to a corresponding electrical connector provided e.g. by an external unit as the case which will be described further hereinafter. The electrical interface portion is internally connected to the control electronics 22 and to the power source unit 18 of the electronic smoking device 10. For the sake of a better understanding, the processing unit of the electronic smoking device 10 and the further circuitry including further electrical components of the electronic smoking device 10 are not shown in figure 1a but will be illustrated in figure 1d and described in greater detail with respect to this figure.

    [0022] The airflow sensor 24 acts as a puff detector, detecting a user puffing or sucking on the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 of the e-cigarette 10. The airflow sensor 24 can be any suitable sensor for detecting changes in airflow or air pressure, such as a microphone switch including a deformable membrane which is caused to move by variations in air pressure. Alternatively, the sensor may be a Hall element or an electro-mechanical sensor.

    [0023] The control electronics 22 are also connected to an atomizer 26. In the example shown, the atomizer 26 includes a heating coil 28 which is wrapped around a wick 30 extending across a central passage 32 of the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14. The coil 28 may be positioned anywhere in the atomizer 26 and may be transverse or parallel to the liquid reservoir 34. The wick 30 and the heating coil 28 do not completely block the central passage 32. Rather an air gap is provided on either side of the heating coil 28 enabling air to flow past the heating coil 28 and the wick 30. The atomizer may alternatively use other forms of heating elements, such as ceramic heaters, or fiber or mesh material heaters. Non-resistance heating elements such as sonic, piezo and jet spray may also be used in the atomizer in place of the heating coil.

    [0024] The central passage 32 is surrounded by a cylindrical liquid reservoir 34 with the ends of the wick 30 abutting or extending into the liquid reservoir 34. The wick 30 may be a porous material such as a bundle of fiberglass fibers, with liquid in the liquid reservoir 34 drawn by capillary action from the ends of the wick 30 towards the central portion of the wick 30 encircled by the heating coil 28.

    [0025] The liquid reservoir 34 may alternatively include wadding soaked in liquid which encircles the central passage 32 with the ends of the wick 30 abutting the wadding. In other embodiments, the liquid reservoir 34 may comprise a toroidal cavity arranged to be filled with liquid and with the ends of the wick 30 extending into the toroidal cavity. A primary air inhalation port 36-1 is provided at the back end of the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 remote from the end cap 16. The primary air inhalation port 36-1 may be formed from the cylindrical hollow tube atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 or may be formed in an end cap. However, also other embodiments of electronic smoking devices 10 may be realized which do not comprise a primary air inhalation port 36-1. In this embodiment, the primary air inhalation port 36-1 merely serves to reduce the cross-section of the flow path of air through the central passage 32 in order to generate a specific sensation when the electronic smoking device 10 is in use. However, the primary air inhalation port 36-1 is only optional and can also be omitted.

    [0026] The electronic smoking device 10 shown in figure 1a exemplarily further comprises a mouthpiece 39 that is attached to the liquid reservoir 34 and that comprises a plurality of openings. Each opening represents a secondary air inhalation port 36-2 respectively. In this embodiment, the mouthpiece 39 resembles the mouthpiece of a flute and has a hollow body. The front side of the mouthpiece 39 comprising the secondary air inhalation ports 36-2 and the open back side of the mouthpiece 39 that is connected to the liquid reservoir 34 are connected to one another via four edge sides, in more detail via two small edge sides 39-1 (see figures 1b and 1c) opposing each other and via two large edge sides 39-2 (see figures 1b and 1c) opposing each other, wherein the small edge sides 39-1 are arranged substantially perpendicular to the large edge sides 39-2 of the mouthpiece 39 respectively. The small edge sides 39-1 provide for curved and rounded surfaces connecting the large edge sides 39-2 which have a substantially planar surface respectively. Hence, the mouthpiece 39 in this embodiment exemplarily has the cross-shape of a flattened ellipse. However, also other embodiments of electronic smoking devices 10 can be realized which do not comprise a mouthpiece 39 or which comprise any other sort of mouthpiece.

    [0027] In this embodiment of the electronic smoking device 10, two refill openings 33-1, 33-2 are arranged within an outer refill interface portion 33 of the liquid reservoir 34, the refill interface portion 33 being arranged at an end of the liquid reservoir 34, adjacent to the mouthpiece 39. In general, the outer refill interface portion 33 represents an area on the outer surface of the electronic smoking device 10, especially on the outer surface of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10, which is suited and configured for the connection to a refill device, wherein the refill device may be a refill bottle, the nib of a refill bottle, a refill station or a case comprising refill elements as a refill interface. The outer refill interface portion 33 hence represents the area on the outer surface of the electronic smoking device 10, especially on the outer surface of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10, which comprises the refill openings 33-1, 33-2, the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 allowing for a refill of the liquid reservoir 34 from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10.

    [0028] In this embodiment, via the refill openings 33-1, 33-2, the liquid reservoir 34 can be refilled from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10 without that the electronic smoking device 10 needs to be disassembled. Of the two refill openings 33-1, 33-2, only a cross-section of the first refill opening 33-1 is visible in figure 1a, wherein the second refill opening 33-2 is arranged directly adjacent to the first refill opening 33-1. In this embodiment, sealings 33-3 are arranged within the two refill openings 33-1, 33-2 respectively, the sealings 33-3 comprising a material which may easily be pierced via hollow needle elements but nevertheless serve to seal the inside of the liquid reservoir 34 from the outside of the same respectively. Expressed in other words, the first refill opening 33-1 and in this embodiment also the second refill opening 33-2 comprises a sealing 33-3. In such an embodiment, liquid is contained within the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 via the sealings 33-3 even when the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 are accessible from an outside of the liquid reservoir 34 and laid open which will further reduce spilling of liquid during a refill process of the liquid reservoir 34. In other embodiments, the first and/or the second refill opening 33-1, 33-2 may additionally or alternatively comprise a membrane instead of a sealing 33-3. In this embodiment, the sealings 33-3 exemplarily comprise silicone. Such sealings 33-3 are leak-safe which is due to the so called skim-off-effect. Moreover, also a membrane arranged in a first and/or second refill opening 33-1, 33-2 can comprise or be made of silicone.

    [0029] Moreover, in this embodiment, the electronic smoking device 10 further comprises a ring-element 35 rotatable arranged around the refill interface portion 33 of the electronic smoking device 10. In more detail, the end of the liquid reservoir 34 - at which the refill interface portion 33 is positioned - is recessed such that the outer diameter of the electronic smoking device 10 in this area is smaller than for example the outer diameter of the electronic smoking device 10 at the other end of the liquid reservoir 34 which is closest to the end cap 16. At the recessed end of the liquid reservoir 34 - meaning the end providing for the refill interface portion 33 - the ring-element 35 is positioned. The ring-element 35 has an outer diameter which is equal to the outer diameter of the electronic smoking device 10 in an area which is not recessed, e.g. equal to the diameter of the electronic smoking device 10 at the other end of the liquid reservoir 34 which is closest to the end cap 16. Hence, the ring-element 35 and the non-recessed area of the liquid reservoir 34 together provide for a continuous surface of the electronic smoking device 10.

    [0030] As mentioned, the ring-element 35 is adapted to be rotated being movable/rotatable between a refill position and a covering position. In the covering position, the ring-element 35 covers the two refill openings 33-1, 33-2 such that a fluid is additionally prevented from flowing out of the liquid reservoir 34. When the ring-element 35 is rotated to the refill position, the two refill openings 33-1, 33-2 are accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10 via holes provided within the ring-element 35 which in the refill position are aligned with the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 respectively. In figure 1a, the ring-element 35 is exemplarily shown in the covering position. In more detail, when in the covering position, the ring-element 35 covers the entire refill interface portion 33, whereas when in the refill position, the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 arranged within the area providing for the refill interface portion 33 are accessible through the holes within the ring-element 35.

    [0031] Expressed in other words and in more detail, in this embodiment, the electronic smoking device 10 comprises a power supply portion 12, including a power source unit 18 and an atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14, comprising a liquid reservoir 34, and an atomizer 26 operable when connected to the power source unit 18 to atomize liquid stored in the liquid reservoir 34. The liquid reservoir 34 comprises an outer refill interface portion 33 that comprises a first refill opening 33-1 and in this embodiment also a second refill opening 33-2. The first refill opening 33-1 allows for the refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 with a liquid. The electronic smoking device 10 further comprises a ring-element 35 arranged around the outer refill interface portion 33. The ring-element 35 is rotatable from a refill position, in which the first refill opening 33-1 is accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10, to a covering position, in which the ring-element 35 covers the first refill opening 33-1.

    [0032] An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 can be performed in an easy and spill-safe manner, as the electronic smoking device 10 can easily be brought into a refilling state. Simultaneously, the electronic smoking device 10 can easily be re-transferred into a non-refilling state in which the aforementioned refill openings 33-1, 33-2 are covered and further leak-safely sealed. Hence, after the refill process is finished, the electronic smoking device 10 can easily and leak-safely be used. In this embodiment, when in the covering position, the ring-element 35 is adapted to cover the first and the second refill opening 33-1, 33-2 with respect to the outside of the electronic smoking device 10.

    [0033] As mentioned, the outer refill interface portion 33 comprises a second refill opening 33-2, allowing for the suction of air out of the liquid reservoir 34, wherein in the refill position of the ring-element 35, also the second refill opening 33-2 is accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10, and wherein in the covering position of the ring-element 35, the ring-element 35 covers also the second refill opening 33-2. In such an embodiment, air that is ousted out of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 during a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 can be recaptured by the refill system coming to use via the second refill opening 33-2. This will prevent liquid from being spilled during a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10. In this embodiment, when in the covering position, the ring-element 35 also covers the sealings 33-3 arranged within the first and second refill opening 33-1, 33-2 respectively, wherein, when in the refill position, the sealings 33-3 are accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10 via the holes provided within the ring-element 35.

    [0034] The design and function of the ring-element 35 will be described in greater detail with respect to figure 1c.

    [0035] Notwithstanding the aforementioned, also other electronic smoking devices with other liquid reservoirs, with other outer refill interfaces and with other refill openings within such other outer refill interfaces can be realized, that are receivable by the embodiment of a case as described below or by other embodiments of cases. Furthermore, also other ring-elements as described hereinbefore and as described hereinafter can be realized.

    [0036] In use, a user sucks on the e-cigarette 10. This causes air to be drawn into the e-cigarette 10 via one or more air inlets, such as air inlets 38, and to be drawn through the central passage 32, through the primary air inhalation port 36-1 and towards the secondary air inhalation ports 36-2. The change in air pressure which arises is detected by the airflow sensor 24, which generates an electrical signal that is passed to the control electronics 22. In response to the signal, the control electronics 22 activate the heating coil 28, which causes liquid present in the wick 30 to be vaporized creating an aerosol (which may comprise gaseous and liquid components) within the central passage 32. As the user continues to suck on the e-cigarette 10, this aerosol is drawn through the central passage 32 and inhaled by the user. At the same time the control electronics 22 also activate the LED 20 causing the LED 20 to light up which is visible via the translucent end cap 16 mimicking the appearance of a glowing ember at the end of a conventional cigarette. As liquid present in the wick 30 is converted into an aerosol, more liquid is drawn into the wick 30 from the liquid reservoir 34 by capillary action and thus is available to be converted into an aerosol through subsequent activation of the heating coil 28.

    [0037] Some e-cigarettes are intended to be disposable and the electric power in the battery 18 is intended to be sufficient to vaporize the liquid contained within the liquid reservoir 34, after which the e-cigarette 10 is thrown away. In this embodiment, the battery 18 is rechargeable and the liquid reservoir 34 is refillable. In the cases where the liquid reservoir 34 is a toroidal cavity, this may be achieved by refilling the liquid reservoir 34 via the refill interface portion 33 as described hereinbefore. In other embodiments, the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 of the e-cigarette 10 is detachable from the power supply portion 12 and a new atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 can be fitted with a new liquid reservoir 34 thereby replenishing the supply of liquid. In some cases, replacing the liquid reservoir 34 may involve replacement of the heating coil 28 and the wick 30 along with the replacement of the liquid reservoir 34. A replaceable unit comprising the atomizer 26 and the liquid reservoir 34 is called a cartomizer.

    [0038] In this example, the two separate refill openings 33-1, 33-2 of the refill interface portion 33 are adapted for the reception of two hollow needle elements (not shown) of a refill interface element (not shown) of a case which will be described further hereinafter. Via the two hollow needle elements connected to the refill interface element, the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 is refillable. However, in other examples and other embodiments, the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device may comprise a refill interface portion comprising only one opening that is adapted for the reception of a single hollow needle element of a refill interface element of a case.

    [0039] Of course, in addition to the above description of the structure and function of a typical e-cigarette 10, variations also exist. For example, the LED 20 may be omitted. The airflow sensor 24 may be placed adjacent to the end cap 16 rather than in the middle of the e-cigarette. The airflow sensor 24 may be replaced with a switch which enables a user to activate the e-cigarette manually rather than in response to the detection of a change in airflow or air pressure.

    [0040] Different types of atomizers may be used. For example, the atomizer may have a heating coil in a cavity in the interior of a porous body soaked in liquid. In this design, aerosol is generated by evaporating the liquid within the porous body, either by activation of the coil heating the porous body or, alternatively, by the heated air passing over or through the porous body. Alternatively, the atomizer may use a piezoelectric atomizer to create an aerosol either in combination or in the absence of a heater.

    [0041] In figure 1b, the electronic smoking device 10 as described hereinbefore is shown in a perspective view, wherein the ring-element 35 has been removed from the electronic smoking device 10 to show the sealings 33-3 arranged within the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 of the outer refill interface portion 33. Furthermore, the aforementioned electrical interface portion 40 of the electronic smoking device 10 is visible in figure 1b, the electrical interface portion 40 comprising the four electrical terminals 41, allowing for an electrical connection of the electronic smoking device 10 and the case which will be described further hereinafter. However, via the electrical terminals 41 of the electrical interface portion 40, the electronic smoking device 10 can also be connected to any other external unit, e.g. to a docking station that is connected to a personal computer, to a notebook or laptop, to a tablet computer and/or to a charger. Moreover, the further air inlets 38 arranged close to the end cap 16 are visible in figure 1b. In this embodiment, the further air inlets 38 are arranged in a pattern resembling a plurality of flowers. However, the air inlets 38 may be arranged in any other pattern or be omitted as mentioned further above. Furthermore, in other embodiments of electronic smoking devices, other electrical interface portions with other electrical terminals may be provided. Such other electrical interface portions can also be arranged at different positions of an electronic smoking device.

    [0042] In figure 1c, the design and functionality of the ring-element 35 is further illustrated. On the left side of figure 1c, the ring-element 35 of the electronic smoking device 10 described with respect to figures 1a and 1b is shown in the covering position. In this position, the first and the second refill opening 33-1, 33-2 are covered by the ring-element 35 respectively. Hence, the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 cannot be refilled. That the electronic smoking device 10 is in the covering position, is indicated via a symbol illustrating a closed lock that is engraved on the ring element 35 and that is - only in the covering position of the ring-element 35 - aligned with one of the two small edge sides 39-1 of the mouthpiece 39. In other embodiments, the symbol indicating the position may be printed on the ring-element 35, may be positioned at another position of the ring-element 35 or may be omitted.

    [0043] When the ring-element 35 is rotated or turned to the left side by an angle of 90°, the ring-element 35 is transferred into the refill position. In figure 1c, the rotation of the ring-element 35 and how this rotation may be performed, is indicated via an arrow and via an imaginary hand (see the right side of figure 1c) that holds the ring-element 35 between two fingers performing a pinch and turn movement. In this embodiment, two holes 37 are arranged within the ring-element 35, the holes 37 being aligned with the first refill opening 33-1 and in this embodiment also with the second refill opening 33-2 when the ring-element 35 is in the refill position. In such an embodiment, the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 are merely accessible when aligned with the holes 37 arranged within the ring-element 35, which further reduces spilling of the liquid, as not the whole diameter of the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 is accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10 respectively when the ring-element 35 is in the refill position. In contrary, the portion of the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 that is accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device 10 is delimited by the diameter of the holes 37 respectively.

    [0044] Expressed in other words, when the ring-element 35 is in the refill position, two holes 37 in the ring-element 35 are aligned with the first and the second refill opening 33-1, 33-2. As mentioned, in this embodiment, also the sealings 33-3 arranged within the first and second refill opening 33-1, 33-2 are positioned below the ring-element 35. Expressed in other words, when in the covering position, also the sealings 33-3 are covered by the ring-element 35.

    [0045] On the right side of figure 1c, the electronic smoking device 10 with the ring-element 35 being in the refill position is illustrated. The sealings 33-3 arranged within the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 are visible through the holes 37 arranged within the ring-element 35. That the electronic smoking device 10 is in the refill position is indicated via a symbol illustrating an opened lock that is engraved on the ring element 35 and that is - only in the refill position of the ring-element 35 - aligned with one of the two small edge sides 39-1 of the mouthpiece 39. As mentioned, in other embodiments, the symbol indicating the position may be printed on the ring-element 35, may be positioned at another position of the ring-element 35 or may be omitted. As can be seen on the right side of figure 1c, in the refill position of the ring-element 35, for example hollow needle elements can be inserted into the released refill openings 33-1, 33-2 in order to inject a liquid into the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 and in order to suck out air that is ousted out of the liquid reservoir 34 during the refill process. In this embodiment, the ring-element 35 exemplarily comprises a thin metal. However, the ring-element 35 can also comprise or be made of any other material, e.g. aluminum, copper, a plastic, wood, ceramic or any other material. Furthermore, as mentioned, the ring-element 35 in this embodiment is rotatable by and angle of 90° in order to transfer the ring-element 35 from the covering position to the refill position and vice versa. However, in other embodiments, the ring-element 35 may be rotatable by an angle of 10°, 15°, 20°, 25°, 30°, 35°, 40°, 45°, 50°, 55°, 60°, 65°, 70°, 75°, 80°, 85°, 95°, 100°, 105°, 110°, 115°, 120°, 125°, 130°, 135°, 140°, 145°, 150° 155°, 160°, 165°, 170°, 175°, 180° or by any other degree in order to transfer the ring-element 35 from the covering position to the refill position and vice versa.

    [0046] Moreover, in this embodiment, the outer wall of the liquid reservoir 34 exemplarily further comprises a window, allowing for a user to check how much liquid is left within the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10. However, such a window is only optional and can also be omitted.

    [0047] In figure 1d, especially the electrical components of the electronic smoking device 10 as provided in this embodiment are illustrated. As mentioned before, in this embodiment, the control electronics 22 exemplarily comprise a processing unit which in this embodiment is exemplarily realized as a micro processor. The processing unit forms a substantial part of the control electronics 22 and in this embodiment is exemplarily enclosed in a flat case that can be seen from the side in figure 1d. The flat case in this embodiment exemplarily comprises a hard-wearing plastic, but may also comprise any other material in other embodiments of electronic smoking devices. Furthermore, in other embodiments, the processing unit can also comprise a controller, especially a micro controller, a digital signal processor and/or any other integrated or non-integrated component suitable for data processing.

    [0048] Via input and output terminals being accessible from an outside of the processing unit, the processing unit is electrically connected to further electrical components which are not arranged within the flat case, as e.g. the air flow sensor 24. However, the processing unit and in general the control electronics 22 may be realized in a manner that differs from the one described herein. For example, the processing unit, the control electronics 22 and the further electrical components of the electronic smoking device 10 may also be arranged on and electrically connected via a circuit board, especially via a printed circuit board. In this embodiment, the electronic smoking device 10 comprises a plurality of device sensor units 50. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the electronic smoking device 10 can measure and/or detect via the device sensor units 50 a plurality of different states the electronic smoking device 10 is currently in. Hence, such device sensor units 50 allow for an improved usage of the electronic smoking device 10, as a user may be warned of critical situations occurring during the usage of the electronic smoking device 10 (e.g. the battery running out of power, the liquid reservoir 34 running out of liquid) and/or as data gathered/captured by the device sensor units 50 can advantageously be evaluated. Expressed in other words, the device sensor units 50 are adapted to measure and/or detect at least one state of the electronic smoking device 10 respectively.

    [0049] In this embodiment, two of the device sensor units 50 are realized as components which are spatially separated from the processing unit but are nevertheless electrically connected to the same. The electrical connection between these device sensor units 50 and the processing unit in this embodiment is provided via wires/cables. However, also rigid electrical connectors may come to use to provide for the aforementioned electrical connection. Furthermore, one of the device sensor units 50 is provided within or substantially within the flat body of the control electronics 22 and forms a component that is integrated into the processing unit and the control electronics 22.

    [0050] In this embodiment, one of the device sensor units 50 comprises a device power sensor 51, adapted to detect a state of charge, SOC, of the power source unit 18. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the user of the electronic smoking device 10 can be warned before the electronic smoking device 10 runs out of power, allowing for the user to connect the electronic smoking device 10 to an external power supply via the electrical terminals 41 of the electrical interface portion 40 before the power supply to the processing unit is interrupted or breaks down. The connection to the external power supply allows for the power source unit 18 of the electronic smoking device 10 to be recharged via the external power supply. Hence, in such an embodiment, the device power sensor 51 allows for an optimized usage of the electronic smoking device 10. In this embodiment, the device power sensor 51 is exemplarily adapted to measure an Open Circuit Voltage, OCV, of the power source unit 18 of the electronic smoking device 10 and to determine the state of charge, SOC, of the power source unit 18 via the measured Open Circuit Voltage. However, any other device power sensor 51 may come to use, using other elements and other methods to determine or derive the state of charge of the power source unit 18 from the electronic smoking device 10.

    [0051] Such other device power sensors 51 may be adapted to perform/execute current-based SOC estimation methods, as e.g. the so called Coulomb Counting. However, also other device power sensors 51 may come to use which are adapted to perform an estimation of the SOC of the power source unit 18 of the electronic smoking device 10 from internal impedance measurements of the same or via the determination or estimation of other parameters.

    [0052] Moreover, in this embodiment, one of the device sensor units 50 comprises a device humidity sensor 52, adapted to detect the amount of liquid left within the liquid reservoir 34. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that a filling state of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 may be detected and signalled to a user of the electronic smoking device 10, e.g. allowing for a user of the electronic smoking device 10 to be warned about an insufficient state or level of liquid within the liquid reservoir 34. In this embodiment, the device humidity sensor 52 is exemplarily realized as a conductive strip which is arranged within the liquid reservoir 34 and which extends along a substantial part or fraction of the length of the liquid reservoir 34. In this embodiment, the conductive strip exemplarily comprises an electrically conductive metal and, further exemplarily, is adapted to use a capacitive measurement method to detect the current filling state or filling level of the liquid reservoir 34 when the electronic smoking device 10 is in an upright position.

    [0053] When in the upright position, a device centre line DCL going through the geometrical centre of the end cap 16, through the geometrical centre of the power supply portion 12, through the geometrical centre of the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 and through the geometrical centre of the mouthpiece 39 of the electronic smoking device 10 is parallel to the effective direction of the force of gravity of the earth acting on the mass of the electronic smoking device 10, wherein the end cap 16 of the electronic smoking device 10 is arranged closer to the surface of the earth than the mouthpiece 39 of the electronic smoking device 10. The aforementioned length of the liquid reservoir extends into a direction that is parallel to the device centre line DCL.

    [0054] In this embodiment, the device humidity sensor 52 is exemplarily connected to the processing unit of the control electronics 22 via rigid connectors 52-1 that have an electrical touch contact which in figure 1d is illustrated as a filled circle. The electrical touch contact allows for the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 of the electronic smoking device 10 to be detached and disconnected from the power supply portion 12 of the electronic smoking device 10, as the two terminals of the electrical touch contact, being connected to the device humidity sensor 52 and to the control electronics 22 and the processing unit, are not fixed to one another. In contrary, the two terminals of the electrical touch contact only contact each other when the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 of the electronic smoking device 10 is correctly attached and connected to the power supply portion 12 of the electronic smoking device 10. Only then the device humidity sensor 52 is electrically connected to the control electronics 22 and to the processing unit. However, in other embodiments, in which the atomizer/liquid reservoir portion 14 of the electronic smoking device 10 is not configured detachable from the power supply portion 12, the device humidity sensor 52 may be directly and permanently connected to the processing unit of the control electronics 22 without that an electrical touch contact is provided.

    [0055] However, any other device humidity sensor 52 may come to use which can also be differently connected to the control electronics 22 and to the processing unit of the electronic smoking device 10. In this embodiment, one of the device sensor units 50 comprises a device refill sensor 53, adapted to detect if an object is inserted into the first refill opening 33-1. In such an embodiment, it can be advantageously detected and signalled to a user whether e.g. a hollow needle element, designed and configured for a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10, is inserted / correctly inserted into the first refill opening 33-1. In this embodiment, the device refill sensor 53 is exemplarily also arranged within the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 adjacent to the first refill opening 33-1 of the outer refill interface portion 33. In this embodiment, the device refill sensor 53 exemplarily comprises a photodiode adapted to detect a change of light caused by an object that is inserted into the refill opening 33-1. However, the device refill sensor 53 may also comprise any other type of sensor unit and can also be arranged in a different position. Moreover, in this embodiment, the device refill sensor 53 is exemplarily electrically connected to the control electronics 22 and to the processing unit via the rigid connectors 52-1 of the device humidity sensor 52. However, any other electrical connection to the control electronics 22 and the processing unit may be provided.

    [0056] Further other device sensor units 50 adapted to measure other states and parameters of the electronic smoking device 10 are provided within the electronic smoking device 10 but not mentioned hereinafter. According to another embodiment, an electronic smoking device may also comprise other and/or only comprise some or none of the aforementioned device sensor units 50.

    [0057] Besides the device sensor units 50, the electronic smoking device 10 in this embodiment further comprises other electrical and electronic components. For example, in this embodiment, the electronic smoking device 10 further comprises a device communication unit 45 electrically connected to the electrical interface portion 40 (see figure 1b) of the electronic smoking device 10, the electrical interface portion 40 being adapted for an electrical connection with electrical contacts of an external unit. In such an embodiment, the electronic smoking device 10 may transmit and receive data to and from an external unit, allowing for an eased usage of the electronic smoking device 10 as data of the electronic smoking device 10 may easily be processed and evaluated. The external unit for example can be a data reading device, a charging or docking station but also the case which will be described further below. The external unit can also be a personal computer or a component that is connectable to a personal computer or the like. In this embodiment, the device communication unit 45 is adapted to support a plurality of different communication protocols. Via the device communication unit 45, data gathered or captured with the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 may be transmitted to the external unit, e.g. for further processing and evaluation of the data.

    [0058] Expressed in other words, the device communication unit 45 is electrically connected to the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 and is adapted to transmit data captured by the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 to the electrical interface portion 40. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the data captured and gathered by the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 may be transmitted to the external unit, e.g. for a further evaluation. Moreover, the data transmitted can be processed by an external unit and used to signal, e.g. display via a display unit, a state of the electronic smoking device 10 to the user of the electronic smoking device 10. The state of the electronic smoking device 10 that is signalled to the user may be a detected state of a plurality of predefined states. The device communication unit 45 may further be connected or connectable to an USB interface of the electronic smoking device 10 and/or of an external unit. Moreover, the device communication unit 45 may further be connected or connectable to any other interface of the electronic smoking device 10 and/or of an external unit.

    [0059] Furthermore, in this embodiment, the device communication unit 45 is further adapted for a communication with a mobile terminal device via a wireless communication network. In such an embodiment, the electronic smoking device 10 may wirelessly transmit data of the electronic smoking device 10 to e.g. a smartphone, allowing for an even easier evaluation of for example the data captured and gathered by the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53. Furthermore, such a device communication unit 45 allows for a more convenient usage of the electronic smoking device 10, as e.g. a state of the electronic smoking device 10 can be checked basically anywhere using the mobile terminal device without being near to the electronic smoking device 10. In more detail, for example data that is sensed via the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 and/or stored can be processed and/or statistically evaluated using a mobile terminal device, e.g. a smartphone, a computer or a tablet computer. This allows for an ameliorated use of the electronic smoking device 10. In this embodiment, the device communication unit 45 is exemplarily realized as a combined WLAN and LTE communication module. Accordingly, the wireless communication network via which the combined WLAN and LTE communication module is adapted to communicate is the Wireless Local Area Network, WLAN, and the LTE network. However, the device communication unit 45 can also be realized as any other communication module and the wireless communication network via which a communication is established can be any other network, e.g. a 3G, 4G or 5G network, a Bluetooth network or a near field communication, NFC, based network or any other network suitable for a communication with a mobile terminal device. In this embodiment, also the device communication unit 45 is realized as a component of the processing unit of the control electronics 22. However, the device communication unit 45 may also be a unit that is separate from the processing unit of the control electronics 22. In this embodiment, also the operation of the device communication unit 45 is controlled via the processing unit of the control electronics 22.

    [0060] Moreover, in this embodiment, the device communication unit 45 is adapted to receive commands for the transmission of data by an external unit electrically connected to the electronic smoking device 10 via the electrical interface portion 40. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the electronic smoking device 10 and especially the transmission of data from the electronic smoking device 10 can easily be controlled via the external unit, e.g. by the case which will be described further hereinafter.

    [0061] In addition, in this embodiment, the device communication unit 45 is further adapted to receive commands for the transmission of data by the mobile terminal device via the wireless communication network.

    [0062] The following description related to figures 2 to 15b is directed to an embodiment of a case 500 for the electronic smoking device 10 as described hereinbefore. Hence, all functionalities of the case 500 described hereinafter, e.g. referring to a refilling of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device 10 or to the recharging of the power source unit 18 of an electronic smoking device 10, can be performed using the embodiment of an electronic smoking device 10 as described hereinbefore and as shown e.g. in figures 1a, 1b, 1c and 1d. However, the case 500 may also be used with and for other embodiments of electronic smoking devices. For an eased understanding, the functionality of the case 500 will be described with respect to the electronic smoking device 10 as described hereinbefore.

    [0063] Figure 2 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a case 500 for the electronic smoking device 10 without that the electronic smoking device 10 is arranged therein.

    [0064] The case 500 comprises a first and a second wing element 200, 300 pivotably attached to a primary reception portion 400 of the case 500 respectively, wherein the primary reception portion 400 is arranged between the first and second wing element 200, 300 and is adapted to receive the electronic smoking device 10 described hereinbefore. The wing elements 200, 300 each comprise an enclosed or a substantially enclosed compartment or chamber respectively and house a plurality of components of the case 500 respectively, which will be described further hereinafter. The wing elements 200, 300 are pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500, meaning that a hinged connection between the wing elements 200, 300 and the primary reception portion 400 allows for the wing elements 200, 300 to be rotated around the primary reception portion 400 to a predefined degree respectively. In this embodiment, the first wing element 200 of the case 500 is pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion 400 in an anti-clockwise direction. The second wing element 300 is pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion 400 in a clockwise direction. However, in other embodiments, the primary reception portion 400 may not be arranged in between the first and the second wing element 200, 300, but on an end portion of the first and the second wing element 200, 300, with both the wing elements 200, 300 being pivotable in a clockwise or an anti-clockwise direction respectively.

    [0065] In the first state of the wing elements 200, 300 shown in figure 2 - in which the wing elements 200, 300 are not pivoted and in which the case 500 is closed - the case 500 substantially has a rectangular, cuboid shaped body with rounded edges. Throughout the following description, this state will be denoted as the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300.

    [0066] In the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, the case 500 comprises a front side wall 501, a back side wall 502 (not visible in figure 2) and edge side walls 503 connecting the front side wall 501 of the case 500 with the back side wall 502 of the case 500 at a periphery of the front- and back side wall 501, 502 respectively. The back side wall 502 of the case 500 is visible in figure 9 which will be described further below. The edge side walls 503 are tapered towards the front- and back side wall 501, 502 of the case 500 respectively, providing for an angled transition from the edge side walls 503 of the case 500 to the front- and back side walls 501, 502 of the case 500 respectively. Not taking into account for the sides of the case 500 provided by the rounded edges 504 of the case 500, the case 500 has four edge side walls 503, wherein two smaller edge side walls 503-1 delimiting a lower end and an upper end of the case 500 are opposing each other respectively and wherein two larger edge side walls 503-2 delimiting a left end and a right end of the case 500 are opposing each other respectively.

    [0067] The case 500 substantially has a shape and a dimension that is adjusted to an average size hand of a human being. In more detail, the shape, size and the dimension of the case 500 are comparable to the shape, size and the dimension of a smartphone, e.g. of an iPhone, especially of an iPhone 6. In this embodiment, the height H of the case 500, measured as the distance between the two smaller edge sidewalls 503-1, is exemplarily equal to 135 mm. However, the height H of the case 500 can also have a value of H ∈ [100 mm; 160mm], of H ∈ [110 mm; 150mm], of H ∈ [120 mm; 140mm] or any other value.

    [0068] As mentioned, the case 500 for the electronic smoking device 10 described hereinbefore comprises a primary reception portion 400, which is adapted to receive the electronic smoking device 10, and a first and a second wing element 200, 300, each comprising a substantially closed compartment and being hingedly connected to the primary reception portion 400 respectively. The wing elements 200, 300 are each pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion 400 and adapted to fix an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 to the case 500.

    [0069] Such a case 500 allows for an easy and safe transport of the electronic smoking device 10, which on the one hand may easily be fixed to the case 500 and on the other hand may easily be released from the case 500 without much effort to be invested. Furthermore, such a case 500 is compact while simultaneously allowing for the provision of a plurality of further functionalities.

    [0070] In this embodiment, the second wing element 300 comprises a plurality of sensor units (not visible in figure 2). Via the plurality of sensor units, the usage of the case 500 and of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged therein can be assisted and fundamentally eased, increasing the convenience of a user using the case 500 and the electronic smoking device 10 received by the same.

    [0071] The electronic smoking device 10 is fixed to the case 500 and released from the case 500 via the wing elements 200, 300 which are configured moveable between a first non-pivoted state in which the case 500 is closed and in which an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 is fixed to the case 500, and a second pivoted state, in which the case 500 is opened and in which an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 is released from the case 500.

    [0072] In this embodiment, in the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 is immovably fixed to the case 500 via the wing elements 200, 300, and wherein in a second pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, an electronic smoking device 10 arranged in the primary reception portion 400 is released and removable from the case 500.

    [0073] As mentioned, in this embodiment, the second wing element 300 comprises a plurality of sensor units. However, in other embodiments of the case, the case may only comprise one sensor unit. Furthermore, the one sensor unit or the plurality of sensor units may also be arranged within the first wing element 200, or within the first and the second wing element 200, 300 or within a wing element 200, 300 and within the primary reception portion 400 or solely within the primary reception portion 400. The sensor units of the case 500, especially the functionality and the arrangement of the sensor units will be described further below.

    [0074] In this embodiment, the primary reception portion 400 is arranged in a centre of the case 500 and comprises protrusions 415 extending from distal, opposite ends 410, 420 of the primary reception portion 400, wherein the protrusions 415 are adapted to hold an electronic smoking device 10 therein between. In such an embodiment, an electronic smoking device 10 is advantageously further held, fixed and/or secured by the protrusions 415 so that it does not slip out of the case 500 and out of the primary reception portion 400 when the wing elements 200, 300 are pivoted and transferred to the second pivoted state.

    [0075] In the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, the primary reception portion 400 resembles a slot extending along and in parallel to a substantial part of the height H of the case 500. Expressed in other words, in the non-folded, closed state of the case 500, in which the wing elements 200, 300 are in the first non-pivoted state with respect to the primary reception portion 400, the primary reception portion 400 forms a cavity within the front side wall 501 of the case 500 that has a shape which substantially corresponds to the shape of the electronic smoking device 10 receivable by the primary reception portion 400.

    [0076] The primary reception portion 400 is only accessible via the front side of the case 500 and in the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300 is delimited by inner sides (not shown in figure 2) of the wing elements 300, 400 and by the two protrusions 415 extending from the lower and upper distal, opposite ends 410, 420 of the primary reception portion 400. The protrusions 415 are adapted to hold the electronic smoking device 10 therein between, being in contact with the mouthpiece 39 and the end cap 16 of the electronic smoking device 10 when the electronic smoking device 10 is arranged within the primary reception portion 400. Expressed in other words, the protrusions 415 are arranged at a lower and an upper distal, opposite end 410, 420 of the primary reception portion 400, each protrusion 415 representing an integral part of a respective smaller edge side wall 503-1 of the case 500 respectively. A first one of the protrusions 415 at the lower distal end 410 of the primary reception portion 400 serves as a first clamping element being an integral part of the smaller edge side wall 503-1 at the lower distal end 410 of the primary reception portion 400 while the second one of the protrusions 415 at the upper distal end 420 of the primary reception portion 400 serves as a second clamping element being an integral part of the smaller edge side wall 503-1 at the lower end of the primary reception portion 400. In the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300 and hence in a closed state of the case 500, the outer surfaces of the protrusions 415, together with the portions of the edge side walls 503 provided by the wing elements 200, 300 provide for a substantially planar and coherent surface of the case 500.

    [0077] In this embodiment, a surface of the reception portion 400 and a surface of the first and second wing element 200, 300 respectively are concave and correspond to a surface of the electronic smoking device 10 receivable by the primary reception portion 400 respectively. In more detail, the surface 440 of the primary reception portion 400 and the inner surfaces 240, 340 (see figure 3a) of the first and the second wing element 200, 300 - which in a non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300 are directed inwardly and are facing each other - are concave and correspond to the outer surface of the electronic smoking device 10 receivable by the primary reception portion 400 respectively. In such an embodiment, the case 500 allows to tightly hold the electronic smoking device 10 in a position predefined by the shape of the respective surfaces which correspond to the electronic smoking device 10 when arranged within the primary reception portion 400 in a predefined orientation. The concave surface 440 of the primary reception portion 400 and the concave inner surfaces 240, 340 of the wing elements 200, 300 are each molded and shaped to correspond to the outer surfaces of the electronic smoking device 10, which can also be seen in figure 3a which shows a perspective view of the embodiment of the empty case 500 in which the wing elements 200, 300 are in the second pivoted state.

    [0078] In this second pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, the case 500 is in an opened state. Especially in this second pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, it is clearly visible that the inner surfaces 240, 340 of the first and second wing element 200, 300 are precisely shaped to correspond to the shape of the electronic smoking device 10 receivable by the primary reception portion 400, such that the inner surfaces 240, 340 of the first and second wing element 200, 300 and the surface 440 of the primary reception portion 400 each enclose a reception cavity that corresponds to the surface and shape of the electronic smoking device 10 receivable by the case 500. This can also be seen in greater detail in figures 9a and 9b, where the embodiment of the case 500 is shown with the first wing element 200 being detached from the case 500.

    [0079] When the electronic smoking device 10 is inserted into the primary reception portion 400 as is e.g. shown in figure 4, the case 500 fixes the electronic smoking device 10 tightly and securely to the case 500 as soon as the case 500 is closed and the first and second wing elements 200, 300 are brought into the first non-pivoted state again (see figure 5). In the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300 in which the case 500 is closed, the electronic smoking device 10 may not be removable from the case 500 without being destroyed or without that the case 500 is damaged. To release or remove the electronic smoking device 10 from the case 500 without that the electronic smoking device 10 or the case 500 is damaged, the wing elements 200, 300 need to be brought into the second pivoted state again, in which the case 500 is in an opened state. In this second pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, the electronic smoking device 10 may be grabbed, e.g. performing a pinch movement with two fingers of a hand, and slid sideways out of the primary reception portion 400. Expressed in other words, when the case 500 is closed, the electronic smoking device 10 is trapped between the wings of the case 500. Only when the case 500 is opened the user can remove the electronic smoking device 10. Furthermore, in this embodiment, the electronic smoking device 10 is placed into the case 500 with the mouthpiece 39 ahead.

    [0080] Referring back to figures 2 and 3a, a plurality of other components are visible from outside the case 500, e.g. outside walls of a secondary reception portion 100 with a window 101 therein, a display unit 120 in an off-state, an electrical interface 135 and a refill interface element 160 with a first hollow needle element 161 providing for a liquid outlet 170, the refill interface element 160 being arranged within the primary reception portion 400. Furthermore, electrical contacts 175 arranged within the surface 440 of the primary reception portion 400 are visible. The electrical contacts 175 allow for an electrical connection to the electrical terminals 41 of the electrical interface portion 40 of the electronic smoking device 10 as described hereinbefore. However, the structure and functionality of these components will be described further with respect to the figures 6 to 10.

    [0081] In figure 3a, the hinge elements 412 pivotably connecting the wing elements 200, 300 to the primary reception portion 400 are visible in part. As can be seen in greater detail in figures 9a and 9b, the hinge elements 412 are realized as substantially quarter circle shaped protrusions, orthogonally protruding from side portions of the protrusions 415 at the lower and upper distal end 410, 420 of the primary reception portion 400. Expressed in other words, the hinge elements 412 are shaped like ears projecting sideways from the protrusions 415 of the primary reception portion 400 in a direction that is parallel to the front side wall 501 of the case 500 in the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300. The hinge elements 412 project in a direction that is perpendicular to a straight line directly connecting the lower and upper distal end 410, 420 of the primary reception portion 400 and that is perpendicular to the plane of the inner surfaces 240, 340 of the first and second wing element 200, 300.

    [0082] As can especially be seen in figures 9a and 9b, the hinge elements 412 comprise a guide rail 413 respectively. Each wing element 200, 300 has two components (not shown in figures 9a and 9b) at opposing ends of the wing element 200, 300 respectively, the components corresponding to the guide rails 413 of the hinge elements 412 respectively, each component being arranged slidable within a guide rail 413 respectively. The corresponding components of the wing elements 200, 300 in this embodiment exemplarily have the shape of a pin or knob respectively, the pin or knob being moveable from a first end of the guide rail 413 to a second end of the guide rail 413 respectively. The corresponding components are attached to the guide rails 413 respectively, in a manner preventing them from being released from the guide rails 413, for example by means of a geometry of the components that is adjusted to the shape of the guide rails 413.

    [0083] In figure 3b, a schematic front and side view of the hinge elements 412 interacting with the corresponding components 414 of a wing element 200, 300 are illustrated. In more detail, figure 3b shows two hinge elements 412 each connected to and sideways protruding from one of the protrusions 415 of the primary reception portion 400. Each substantially quarter circle shaped hinge element 412 comprises a guide rail 413, forming a curved rail for a corresponding component 414 arranged therein. The corresponding component 414 in this embodiment exemplarily has the shape of a plate with a pin thereon, the pin having a rod-shaped body with a knob-shaped head attached to the rod shaped body. The pin protrudes through the guide rail 413, such that the rod-shaped body is substantially arranged within the guide rail 413 and that the hinge element 412 is arranged in between the plate and the knob-shaped head of the pin, causing the corresponding component 414 to be attached to the hinge element 412 but being nevertheless movable therein. The corresponding components 414 in this embodiment form a part of the wing elements 200, 300 respectively, wherein the hinge elements 412 are fixed to the primary reception portion 400.

    [0084] When the corresponding components 414 are arranged in the position shown in figure 3b, the wing elements 200, 300 are in the first non-pivoted state and the case 500 is in the closed state as shown in figure 2. However, when the corresponding components 414 attached to the wing elements 200, 300 move along the guide rail 413 in a direction that in figure 3b is indicated via arrows, the wing elements 200, 300 are moved from the first non-pivoted state to the second pivoted state and the case 500 is in an opened state as is shown in figure 3a. In this embodiment, the corresponding components 414 which are attached to the wing elements 200, 300 respectively are adapted to engage with the hinge elements 412 from behind, meaning that the plate of a corresponding component 414 is arranged between an outside of the case 500 and the corresponding hinge element 412 when the case 500 is in an opened state, while the knob-shaped head of the pin that protrudes through the corresponding guide rail 413 of the hinge element 412 is arranged between an inner center of the case 500 and the hinge element 412. However, the case 500 may be provided with any other mechanism and/or other elements adapted to pivotably attach the wing elements 200, 300 to the case 500. For example, the hinge elements 412 may be provided with a component corresponding to a guide rail that is arranged within a component of the wing elements 200, 300 respectively.

    [0085] In this embodiment, the degree to which the wing elements 200, 300 are pivotable substantially depends on the geometry of the hinge elements 412 and especially on the geometry of the guide rails 413 arranged within the hinge elements 412. While in the first non-pivoted state of the wing elements 200, 300, the wing elements 200, 300 are substantially arranged in a plane and thus enclose an angle of α = 180°, they exemplarily enclose an angle of α = 120° when in the second pivoted state in which the case 500 is in an open state, which is schematically indicated in figure 3a. However, the angle α enclosed by the wing elements 200, 300 when arranged in the second pivoted state may be greater or smaller than 120°. In fact, the angle α enclosed by the wing elements 200, 300 when arranged in the second pivoted state may be equal to α e [0°; 179°]. However, the angle α enclosed by the wing elements 200, 300 when arranged in the second pivoted state may also be equal to α ∈ [10°; 170°], α ∈ [20°; 160°], α ∈ [30°; 150°], α ∈ [40°; 140°], α ∈ [50°; 130°], α ∈ [60°; 120°], α ∈ [70°; 110°], α ∈ [80°; 100°] or α ∈ [85°; 95°] or to any other angle α.

    [0086] In this embodiment, a substantial part of the case 500 comprises a hard-wearing plastic. Furthermore, other materials come to use as e.g. brushed steel, metal and the like. However, the case 500 may also comprise any other material, as e.g. copper, especially brushed copper, carbon, aluminum, wood, a ceramic and/or other materials.

    [0087] In figure 4, it is shown another perspective view of the case 500 as shown in figure 3a in which the electronic smoking device 10 shown in figures 1a, 1b, 1c and 1d is inserted into the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500 using two hands. In figure 4, a user uses his right hand to hold the case 500 at its right wing element 300 while using his left hand to place the electronic smoking device 10 within the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500. After the electronic smoking device 10 is placed within the primary reception portion 400, the case 500 is closed, folding the two wing elements 200, 300 back into the first non-pivoted state/position. The result of these actions is shown in figure 5.

    [0088] Figure 5 is a perspective view of the embodiment of the case 500 with the electronic smoking device 10 as shown in figures 1a, 1b, 1c, 1d and 4 enclosed therein. The electronic smoking device 10 is fully arranged within the primary reception portion 400 which in this embodiment has a rectangular shape. As mentioned before, in this closed state of the case 500, the electronic smoking device 10 is locked within the case 500 and cannot be removed from the same without a destruction of the electronic smoking device 10 or the case 500.

    [0089] As can be seen in figure 5, the case 500 comprises a switching element 159 on one of the two larger edge side walls 503-2. This switching element 159 is realized as a slidable button that allows for the activation of a liquid refill system of the case 500, wherein both the actuator and the pump system are arranged within the case 500. The pump system of the case 500 is adapted to provide liquid from a liquid cartridge 60 received by a secondary reception portion 100 of the case 500 to a liquid outlet, which will be described in detail with respect to the figures 6 to 10 further below.

    [0090] With respect to the figures 6 and 7, the secondary reception portion 100 of the case 500 and the liquid cartridge 60 receivable by the secondary reception portion 100 will be described in further detail in the following.

    [0091] In this embodiment, the first wing element 200 comprises a secondary reception portion 100, adapted to receive a liquid cartridge 60 that is adapted to contain a liquid. In such an embodiment, the case 500 can easily be provided with a replaceable liquid cartridge 60 that allows for a refill of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10. This again allows for a user to substantially increase the duration he is able to vape with the electronic smoking device 10 useable with the case 500, as the user is independent of the amount of liquid stored within the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 which he may refill anytime he likes.

    [0092] In this embodiment, the secondary reception portion 100 is realized as a corner fraction of the first wing element 200, wherein the fraction is reversibly detachable from the wing element 200. In such an embodiment, the secondary reception portion 100 can easily be pulled off or slid off the first wing element 200, which allows for an eased recharge of the case 500 when the liquid cartridge 60 is empty and needs to be replaced. Expressed in other words, in this embodiment, the secondary reception portion 100 forms an upper corner of the case 500, which can be detached from and re-attached to the case 500. The upper corner forming the secondary reception portion 100 comprises a fraction of the upper smaller edge side wall 503-1 of the case 500, a fraction of the larger edge side wall 503-2 of the first wing element 200 of the case 500, the rounded edge 504 connecting the aforementioned edge side wall fractions 503-1, 503-2, a fraction of the front side wall 501 of the case 500 and a fraction of the back side wall 502 of the case 500, the fractions of the front and back side wall 501, 502 both belonging to the first wing element 200.

    [0093] Hence, the secondary reception portion 100 has the shape of a cuboid that has one rounded corner/edge and that is open on a bottom side 104 as can be seen in figures 6 and 7. The secondary reception portion 100 substantially encloses and delimits a rectangular, cuboid shaped volume, adapted to receive a liquid cartridge 60 of a predefined size. In this embodiment, the secondary reception portion 100 can be slid off the case 500 in a sideward direction which in figure 5 is indicated by an arrow and which is perpendicular to the height H of the case 500. This allows for an eased replacement of the liquid cartridge 60 when the same is emptied. In this embodiment, a guide rail (not shown) is provided at an inside of the first wing element 200, the guide rail corresponding to a counterpart (not shown) arranged on the secondary reception portion 100. The guide rail is adapted to interact with the corresponding counterpart arranged on the secondary reception portion 100, wherein the guide rail forms a sliding cavity allowing for the corresponding counterpart to slide therein. The guide rail of the secondary reception portion 100 and the corresponding counterpart allow for the secondary reception portion 100 to be slid off the case 500.

    [0094] In order to detach the secondary reception portion 100 from the case 500, the user can pull or push on the upper corner of the case 500 forming the secondary reception portion 100 along a direction which is perpendicular to the height H of the case 500 and which is pointing away from the case 500, sliding it along the aforementioned guide rail / sliding cavity arranged within the first wing element 200 of the case 500. This pulling or pushing of the upper corner can e.g. be achieved via a pinch-movement performed with two fingers using the left hand as is illustrated in figure 7.

    [0095] As mentioned before, the secondary reception portion 100 comprises a window 101, which is arranged within the aforementioned fraction of the front side wall 501 of the case 500. The window 101 allows for the user to see whether there is a liquid cartridge 60 received by the secondary reception portion 100 and how much liquid is left within a liquid cartridge 60 received by the secondary reception portion 100. The window 101 has an elongated, rectangular shape extending across a substantial part of the height of the secondary reception portion 100. In figure 6, the case 500 is shown in a closed state in which the secondary reception portion 100 is detached from the case 500 and in which the electronic smoking device 10 is not arranged within the case 500. Via the open bottom side 104 of the secondary reception portion 100, a liquid cartridge 60 is inserted into the empty secondary reception portion 100. In this embodiment, the liquid cartridge 60 has a substantially cuboid shaped body comprising four substantially rectangular side walls 64, a cartridge cap 63 at its tip and a moveable component 61 as a bottom part, which will be described further hereinafter.

    [0096] In this embodiment, the liquid cartridge 60 exemplarily comprises a liquid that comprises among others nicotine and a further mint flavoured component. However, the liquid cartridge 60 is adapted to receive any kind of liquid that is suited for the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10. Such a liquid for example can comprise solely nicotine. In addition, other flavored components can be added to the liquid, for example esters, such as isoamyl acetate, linalyl acetate, isoamyl propionate, linalyl butyrate and the like or natural essential oils as plant essential oils, such as spearmint, peppermint, cassia, jasmine and the like or animal essential oils, such as musk, amber, civet, castor and the like or simple flavoring materials, such as anethole, limonene, linalool, eugenol and the like or hydrophilic flavor components such as a leaf tobacco extract or natural plant flavoring materials such as licorice, St. John's wort, a plum extract, a peach extract and the like or acids such as a malic acid, tartaric acid, citric acid and the like or sugars such as glucose, fructose, isomerized sugar and the like or polyhydric alcohols such as propylene glycol, glycerol, sorbitol and the like. It is also possible to combine different flavored components as mentioned above into new flavored liquids. However, the liquid cartridge 60 further can be adapted to receive any other kind of liquid.

    [0097] When the liquid cartridge 60 is fully arranged within the secondary reception portion 100, the secondary reception portion 100 is - from a side - re-attached to the case 500 with the liquid cartridge 60 therein. Afterwards, the electronic smoking device 10 may be arranged within the case 500 as has been described hereinbefore with respect to the figures 1 to 5. However, the liquid cartridge 60 can also be inserted into the secondary reception portion 100 when the electronic smoking device 10 is received by the primary reception portion 400, which is illustrated in figures 7a to 7d.

    [0098] In this embodiment, the cartridge cap 63 is adapted to be perforated when the liquid cartridge 60 is fully inserted into the secondary reception portion 100. The perforation of the cartridge cap 63 serves as a cartridge outlet 65. Furthermore, also the secondary reception portion 100 comprises a reception portion outlet 103 (see figure 7a) on the side of the secondary reception portion 100 that is closest to the primary reception portion 400 when the secondary reception portion 100 is re-attached to the case 500. The height of the liquid cartridge 60 is adjusted to the height of the secondary reception portion 100, such that liquid which exits the cartridge outlet 65 may pass the reception portion outlet 103 when the reception portion outlet 103 is connected to the aforementioned refill interface element 160, which will be described further hereinafter.

    [0099] In figure 7a, a user holds the secondary reception portion 100 of the embodiment of the case 500 in the right hand and inserts a liquid cartridge 60 filled with liquid into the secondary reception portion 100 using the left hand. In figure 7b, the user holds the case 500 in the right hand and then re-attaches the secondary reception portion 100 with the liquid cartridge 60 therein to the case 500 using the left hand. In figure 7c, the user switches on the switching element 159 (see figure 5) to activate the liquid refill system described further below and to transfer the case 500 into a refill mode. Via the display unit 120, it is indicated to the user how the user has to hold / to adjust the orientation of the case 500 in order to allow for the case 500 to automatically refill the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the case 500 using the actuator. In figure 7d, the user adjusts the orientation of the case 500 as indicated to the user via the display unit 120, tilting the case 500 into an upright position, which will initiate the automatic refill process.

    [0100] Figure 8 shows a schematic cross-sectional illustration of the embodiment of the case 500 as described hereinbefore. Expressed in other words, while the aforementioned description was substantially directed to the outer aspects of the case 500, figure 8 schematically shows the interior of the case 500, especially the interior of the wing elements 200, 300. Hence, the following description is substantially directed to the inner aspects of this embodiment of the case 500. However, the inner aspects, meaning the components of the case 500 may fundamentally differ from the components as described hereinafter.

    [0101] As mentioned before, the case 500 comprises a liquid refill system 190, which comprises a liquid inlet 180, fluidically connectable to the cartridge outlet 65 of a liquid cartridge 60 received by the secondary reception portion 100. Furthermore, the liquid refill system 190 comprises a liquid outlet 170, fluidically connected to the liquid inlet 180, and a pump system 150, comprising an actuator 155, the pump system 150 being adapted to provide liquid from a liquid cartridge 60 received by the secondary reception portion 100 to the liquid outlet 170 via the liquid inlet 180. In such an embodiment, the case 500 has a refill mechanism advantageously allowing for an effortless refill of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500. Expressed in other words, such a case 500 allows to pump liquid from a liquid cartridge 60 received by the secondary reception portion 100 into the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 when arranged within the case 500.

    [0102] In this embodiment, the actuator 155 is adapted to drive an actuator element 158 that is configured to interact with a component 61 of a liquid cartridge 60 received by the secondary reception portion 100 upon an activation of the actuator 155. In such an embodiment, merely the actuator 155 needs to be operated in order to pump/push liquid from the liquid cartridge 60 into the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10. In more detail, the pump system 150, which in this embodiment is exemplarily fully arranged within the first wing element 200, comprises an actuator 155 which is exemplarily realized as an electric motor. In this embodiment, the electric motor is exemplarily realized as an electric DC servomotor. However, also any other kind of motor suitable for a use within a case 500 as described hereinbefore may be used, e.g. any other type of electric servomotor and/or an AC-motor may come to use. Furthermore, any other kind of actuator 155 may be used within a case 500 which does not necessarily need to be realized as a motor. In this embodiment, the actuator 155 realized as an electric motor is arranged in a lower part of the closed compartment comprised or provided by the first wing element 200. The aforementioned actuator element 158 in this embodiment is exemplarily realized as gear which is driven by the actuator 155.

    [0103] In more detail, the actuator 155 comprises an actuator shaft 157 which in this embodiment is realized as a motor shaft of the electric motor, the actuator shaft 157 being connected to a first gear wheel 158-1 which in this embodiment represents a primary component of the aforementioned actuator element 158 and hence of the gear. When the actuator 155 is operated, the actuator shaft 157 begins to spin and drives the first gear wheel 158-1 fixed to the actuator shaft 157. The first gear wheel 158-1 fixed to the actuator shaft 157 is in mesh with an external thread of a second gear wheel 158-2 forming a secondary component of the actuator element 158. The second gear wheel 158-2 further comprises an internal thread that is in mesh with a threaded rod 158-3 forming a tertiary component of the actuator element 158. The cogging of the internal thread of the second gear wheel 158-2 and the external thread of the threaded rod 158-3 is such that a rotation of the second gear wheel 158-2 is translated into a translational movement of the threaded rod 158-3. As in this embodiment, the actuator 155 is adapted to rotate the actuator shaft clockwise and anti-clockwise, depending on the polarity of the voltage supplied to the actuator 155, the threaded rod 158-3 may be moved back or forth, depending on the spinning direction of the motor shaft 157.

    [0104] In this embodiment, the aforementioned component 61 of the liquid cartridge 60 is exemplarily formed by the bottom part of the liquid cartridge 60, which in this embodiment is exemplarily realized as a moveable, integrated slider portion. Expressed in other words, the component 61 of the liquid cartridge 60 represents a moveable, integrated slider portion, which is slidable within the liquid cartridge 60. As can be seen e.g. in figures 6, 7a and figure 8, the component 61 is positioned at a bottom portion of the cuboid shaped body of the liquid cartridge 60. The integrated slider portion is configured slidable along the inner side of the cuboid shaped body of the liquid cartridge 60. Moreover, in this embodiment, the integrated slider portion has the shape of a circular plunger or of a circular piston which is in contact with the inner side of the sidewalls 64 of the liquid cartridge 60 and can be moved, in more detail, slid along the inner side of these sidewalls 64 of the liquid cartridge 60. The integrated slider portion in this embodiment exemplarily comprises two ring-shaped gasket elements (not shown) that provide for the contact between the integrated slider portion and the inner sides of the sidewalls 64 of the liquid cartridge 60. The two ring-shaped gasket elements are both exemplarily realized as an O-ring respectively and are both arranged within a respective circumferential cavity, provided within the outer circumference of the integrated slider portion of the liquid cartridge 60 respectively (not shown). The outer circumference of the integrated slider portion of the liquid cartridge 60 faces the inner side of the sidewalls 64 of the cuboid shaped body of the liquid cartridge 60. Moreover, the integrated slider portion comprises a reception cavity (not shown) arranged within a rear side of the integrated slider portion. This reception cavity allows for the integrated slider portion to be connected to and to interact with the threaded rod 158-3 of the actuator element 158 in order to be moved within the liquid cartridge 60, increasing and decreasing the space between the integrated slider portion and the cartridge cap 63, depending on the direction of the movement. Hence, the threaded rod 158-3 can be pushed into the integrated slider portion, pushing up the integrated slider portion within the liquid cartridge 60 and thus pushing liquid within the liquid cartridge 60 out of the liquid cartridge 60. Thus, via the threaded rod 158-3 interacting with the integrated slider portion, liquid contained within the liquid cartridge 60 can be pushed out of the liquid cartridge 60 via the perforations within the cartridge cap 63 forming the aforementioned cartridge outlet 65.

    [0105] Liquid pushed out of the cartridge outlet 65 in this embodiment flows to the reception portion outlet 103 of the secondary reception portion 100 and to a liquid inlet 180 of the liquid refill system 190 via an integrated liquid channelling system 179 of which only a part is visible in figure 8. The part of the integrated liquid channelling system 179 which is not visible in figure 8 is covered by the liquid cartridge 60 inserted into the secondary reception portion 100. However, also any other kind of liquid channelling system may be realized within a case. For example, the reception portion outlet 103 may directly be connectable to the liquid inlet 180 of the liquid refill system 190. Furthermore, the cartridge outlet 65 may directly be connectable to the reception portion outlet 103.

    [0106] In this embodiment, the liquid refill system 190 further comprises a refill interface element 160, the refill interface element 160 comprising a first hollow needle element 161 providing for the liquid outlet 170 and protruding from the refill interface element 160. In such an embodiment, the liquid refill system 190 of the case 500 may easily be connected to the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 of the outer refill interface portion 33 of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 when arranged within the primary reception portion 400. This allows for an eased refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10. As has been mentioned further above and as can be seen in detail e.g. in figures 9a and 9b, the refill interface element 160 is provided in a cavity of the primary reception portion 400. The arrangement of the refill interface element 160 within the primary reception portion 400 is adjusted to the position of the outer refill interface portion 33 of electronic smoking devices 10 when correctly inserted into the primary reception portion 400. In this embodiment, the refill interface element 160 comprises a first hollow needle element 161 and a second hollow needle element 162 arranged directly next to the first hollow needle element and extending in parallel thereto.

    [0107] In this embodiment, the refill interface element 160 is configured movable between an insertion position in which the first hollow needle element 161 protrudes into the primary reception portion 400 and a removed position in which the first hollow needle element 161 does not protrude into the primary reception portion 400. In figure 9a, the refill interface element 160 is shown in the removed position wherein in figure 9b, the refill interface element 160 is shown in the insertion position. In figure 9b, the movement of the refill interface element 160 is further indicated via an arrow. In such an embodiment, the case 500 on the one hand allows to merely carry the electronic smoking device 10 within the case 500 without that the first and the second hollow needle elements 161, 162 of the refill interface element 160 interact with the electronic smoking device 10 and on the other hand to refill the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 when the refill interface element 160 is moved into the insertion position. Only when the ring-element 35 of the electronic smoking device 10 is turned into the refill position, the hollow needle elements 161, 162 can perforate the sealings 33-3 of the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 of the electronic smoking device 10.

    [0108] In this embodiment, the refill interface element 160 comprises an immovable covering piece 163 which is fixed within the cavity that is arranged within the primary reception portion 400 and that comprises the refill interface element 160. The covering piece 163 comprises a plate-shaped body with two through holes arranged therein for the first and the second hollow needle element 161, 162 to be fed through. The covering piece 163 covers the aforementioned cavity, being fully integrated into the concave surface 440 of the primary reception portion 400, providing for a coherent concave surface 440. Furthermore, the refill interface element 160 comprises a moveable interaction piece 164 which substantially has the shape of a block or cube and which is fixedly connected to the first and second hollow needle element 161, 162 respectively. The moveable interaction piece 164 of the refill interface element 160 is moveable between the insertion position and the removed position.

    [0109] In this embodiment, the refill interface element 160 comprises the liquid inlet 180 and a further air outlet 181. The liquid inlet 180 and the air outlet 181 are arranged next to each other on a side of the moveable interaction piece 164 which points towards the reception portion outlet 103 when the secondary reception portion 100 is inserted into the case 500. Within the refill interface element 160, the liquid inlet 180 is fluidically connected to the first hollow needle element 161, the outlet hole of the first hollow needle element 161 providing for the liquid outlet 170 of the liquid refill system 190. The air outlet 181 is fluidically connected to the second hollow needle element 162, so that air which is ousted out of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 is sucked through the second hollow needle element 162 and out of the air outlet 181. Only when the refill interface element 160 is in the insertion position, the liquid inlet 180 is fluidically connected to the integrated liquid channelling system 179 of the case 500, allowing for liquid to flow from the cartridge outlet 65, via the reception portion outlet 103 and the integrated liquid channelling system 179 to the liquid inlet 180, through the first hollow needle element 161 and out of the liquid outlet 170 provided by the first hollow needle element 161 into the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400.

    [0110] When the refill interface element 160 is in the removed position, the integrated liquid channelling system 179 is blocked via a blocking component (not shown), inhibiting liquid from flowing into the liquid inlet 180 of the refill interface element 160. In this embodiment, the refill interface element 160 is accessible from the back side wall 502 of the case 500, the moveable interaction piece 164 comprising a rear side that can be pushed into the case 500 and into the primary reception portion 400 from the back side wall 502. In this embodiment, the refill interface element 160 exemplarily comprises a spring-loaded mechanism (not visible), allowing for the refill interface element 160 to be pushed once to be moved from the removed position into the insertion position where it engages. If the refill interface element 160 is then pushed again, it is released from the insertion position and pushed back into the removed position via the spring-loaded mechanism. However, the refill interface element 160 may also automatically be moveable from the removed position into the insertion position and vice versa. Expressed in other words, in this embodiment, the refill interface element 160 is realized as a sprung carrier that is pushed down when the electronic smoking device 10 is placed. In figure 10, the rear side of the moveable interaction piece 164 arranged within the cavity of the primary reception portion 400 is visible. Furthermore, figure 10 shows that the secondary reception portion 100 comprises a back window 102 which has an elongated shape.

    [0111] In this embodiment, in the insertion position of the refill interface element 160, the air outlet 181 is fluidically connected to an air channelling system 184, which is schematically illustrated in figure 8. The air channelling system 184 allows for air that is pushed out of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 during a refilling of the same to be guided via the second hollow needle element 162, the air outlet 181 and the air channelling system 184 into an air suction reservoir 186. In this embodiment, also the air suction reservoir 186 is a part of the liquid refill system 190 and of the pump system 150, the air suction reservoir 186 being substantially arranged around the threaded rod 158-3 as will be explained further hereinafter.

    [0112] An advantage of such an air suction reservoir 186 may be, that it allows for the pump system 150 to easily be used for a refill of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion 400, wherein air that is ousted out of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 is recaptured by the air suction reservoir 186. Thus, the refilling procedure enabled by the pump system 150 allows for a refill of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 without that liquid is spilled.

    [0113] In this embodiment, the air suction reservoir 186 is substantially tube-shaped, having the shape of a hollow cylinder, comprising a circular reservoir wall that encloses a predefined volume for the suction of air from a liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10. Expressed in other words, the air suction reservoir 186 has a tube-shaped circular reservoir wall forming a base part of the air suction reservoir 186. In this embodiment, the air suction reservoir 186 comprises a plunger component 186-1, the plunger component 186-1 being fixed to the threaded rod 158-3 and thus arranged movably within the air suction reservoir 186, wherein the threaded rod 158-3 is protruding from a front cap portion 186-2 of the air suction reservoir 186. The threaded rod 158-3 is arranged such that it extends in a direction that is parallel to the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500. The front cap portion 186-2 is immovably arranged at the front of the air suction reservoir 186, is facing towards the secondary reception portion 100 and seals the air suction reservoir 186 at its front end in an air-tight manner. The front cap portion 186-2 has the shape of a ring with an inner circumferential notch therein. Within the inner circumferential notch, a sealing ring which in this embodiment is realized as an O-ring is provided. The threaded rod 158-3 is fed through the front cap portion 186-2, being in constant contact with the sealing ring.

    [0114] At the back end of the air suction reservoir 186, a back end plug 186-3 is provided, sealing the air suction reservoir 186 at the back end of the same. The back end plug186-3 is fluidically connected to the air channelling system 184, allowing for air that is sucked out of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 that is refilled to be released into the air suction reservoir 186. The plunger component 186-1 comprises an outer circumferential notch in which also a sealing ring realized as an O-ring is provided. The sealing ring of the plunger component 186-1 is in constant contact with the circular reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186. Expressed in other words, the plunger component 186-1 has the shape of a piston which is in constant contact with the inner sides of the tube-shaped circular reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186. In more detail, the plunger component 186-1 comprises a ring-shaped gasket element realized as a sealing ring. Such a ring-shaped gasket element allows for an air-tight division of the air-suction reservoir 186 into a first and a second chamber, enabling the suction of air via the air suction reservoir 186 that has the structure and functionality of a syringe. The ring-shaped gasket element or the sealing ring is arranged within a circular cavity that is positioned within the outer periphery, so within the circumference of the plunger component 186-1 and that is in a constant contact with the inner sides of the tube-shaped circular reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186. The plunger component 186-1 is fitted into the tube-shaped circular reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186 and is configured slidable along the inner sides of the tube-shaped circular reservoir wall. The plunger component 186-1 separates a first chamber of the air suction reservoir 186 from a second chamber of the air suction reservoir 186, wherein the dimensions and the volumes of the two chambers of the air suction reservoir 186 are variable and depend on the position of the plunger component 186-1 respectively and thus on the position of the threaded rod 158-3. In the position of the plunger component 186-1 shown in figure 8, the volume of the first chamber is minimized while the volume of the second chamber is maximized. The plunger component 186-1 provides for an air-tight separation between the first and the second variable chamber of the air suction reservoir 186. Expressed in other words, the plunger component 186-1 can be pulled and pushed within the tube-shaped circular reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186, altering the pressure within the first and the second chamber of the air suction reservoir 186. When the plunger component 186-1 is moved from the position shown in figures 8 to a position which is closer to the front cap portion 186-2 of the air suction reservoir 186, air is sucked into the first chamber of the air suction reservoir 186 via the air channelling system 184.

    [0115] The combination of threaded rod 158-3 and plunger component 186-1 on the one hand allows for an improved suction of air, providing for an air-tight connection between the plunger component 186-1 and the inner sides of the outer reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186 which enables the generation of an over- or underpressure within the air suction reservoir 186. On the other hand, the combination of threaded rod 158-3 and plunger component 186-1 simultaneously allows for a movement of the integrated slider portion of the liquid cartridge 60, serving as a substantial part of the actuator element 158 of the pump system 150, allowing to push liquid out of the liquid cartridge 60 via the cartridge outlet 65 as described above. In this embodiment, the front cap portion 186-2 is fitted into the front end of the tube-shaped reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186, forming a front end of the air suction reservoir 186. The front cap portion 186-2 and the back end plug 186-3 substantially have a cylindrical shape.

    [0116] When the threaded rod 158-3 is moved via the actuator 155, the plunger component 186-1 is moved together with the threaded rod 158-3 in a longitudinal direction which is parallel to the direction of extension of the reservoir wall of the air suction reservoir 186, so either towards the front cap portion 186-2 of the air suction reservoir 186, or towards the back end plug186-3, depending on the direction of rotation of the actuator shaft 157. Thus, via a movement of threaded rod 158-3, the pump system 150 is actuated and air is sucked into the air suction reservoir 186 when the threaded rod 158-3 is moved into a direction causing the threaded rod 158-3 and the plunger component 186-1 thereon to move closer towards the secondary reception portion 100. When a liquid cartridge 60 is inserted in the secondary reception portion 100, the integrated slider portion of the liquid cartridge 60 is actuated via the threaded rod 158-3, pushing liquid within the liquid cartridge 60 out of the same via the cartridge outlet 65.

    [0117] However, also other embodiments of cases 500 can be realized with other air suction reservoirs. Furthermore, it is also possible to realize cases 500 which do not comprise an air suction reservoir and/or which do not comprise an air channelling system 184. For example, air can also be ousted and/or guided to the atmosphere and does not necessarily be recaptured in a reservoir.

    [0118] In this embodiment, the liquid refill system 190 is entirely arranged within the first wing element 200 and the primary reception portion 400. In such an embodiment, the case 500 is very compact and the manufacturing of the case 500 is eased. Furthermore, the case 500 may easily be repaired and the wing element 200, 300 comprising the liquid refill system 190 may easily be exchanged. Expressed in other words, in this embodiment, the actuator 155 and the actuator element 158 are arranged within the first wing element 200, whereas the refill interface element 160 is arranged within the primary reception portion 400.

    [0119] Moreover, in this embodiment, the case 500 comprises a power source 130, adapted to supply energy to the pump system 150 and to recharge a power source unit 18 of an electronic smoking device 10 that is received by the primary reception portion 400. An advantage of such a case 500 may be that the user of the case 500 is not forced to manually pump liquid into the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 which may be inconvenient to the user. Furthermore, such an embodiment does not only allow for a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10, but also to recharge the power source unit 18 of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the case 500. In this embodiment, the power source 130 of the case 500 is electrically connected (not shown) to the electrical contacts 175 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 which allows for the power source 130 of the case 500 to recharge the power source unit 18 of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the case 500.

    [0120] In this embodiment, the power source 130 is exemplarily realized as a rechargeable power supply, in more detail as a rechargeable accumulator, which is arranged within the substantially closed compartment provided by the second wing element 300 of the case 500. The poles of the rechargeable power source 130 are electrically connected to the electrical input terminals of the actuator 155 via electrical connectors, allowing to provide the electrical input terminals of the actuator 155 with a predefined voltage to operate the same. In this embodiment, the electrical connectors are exemplarily realized as conducting paths which are lead through the primary reception portion 400. However, the electrical connectors may also be realized differently in other embodiments of cases. Furthermore, the rechargeable power source 130 may also be arranged within the first wing element 200. In other embodiments, the power source 130 may not be rechargeable, but represent a replaceable, single use component. Furthermore, the case 500 can also be provided with a power source 130 without that a liquid refill system 190 is provided. In such an embodiment, the power source may only allow for a recharge of the power source unit 18 of an electronic smoking device 10 that is received by the primary reception portion 400.

    [0121] In this embodiment, the power source 130 is electrically connected to an electrical interface 135 accessible from an outside of the case 500, the electrical interface 135 being electrically connectable to an external power supply, allowing for the power source 130 of the case 500 to be recharged via the external power supply. In such an embodiment, the power source 130 may easily be rechargeable via the electrical interface 135. In this embodiment, the electrical interface 135 is exemplarily realized as a USB-port that is electrically connected to an USB-driver component 135-1. However, any other kind of electrical interface 135 may come to use.

    [0122] Furthermore, in this embodiment, the case 500 comprises a display unit 120 and a display driver unit 125, configured to operate the display unit 120. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the display unit 120 can be used to display a specific content, a user interface for an interaction with a user or a plurality of icons to the user, wherein the icons may indicate that the case 500 is in a specific predefined state. Hence, such an embodiment allows for an ameliorated use of the case 500 and of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged therein. In this embodiment, also the display unit 120 is arranged within the second wing element 300. In more detail, the display unit 120 in this embodiment is integrated into the front side wall 501 of the case 500. The display unit 120 in this embodiment exemplarily comprises a liquid crystal display (LCD). However, the display unit 120 may also comprise any other display, e.g. an OLED-display or an electrowetting display or any other display.

    [0123] In this embodiment, the case 500 further comprises a processing unit 108 which is also arranged within the second wing element 300. The processing unit 108 is electrically connected to the display driver unit 125 and adapted to provide the display driver unit 125 with commands. In this embodiment, the processing unit 108 further comprises a storage unit (not shown). The storage unit comprises a memory unit, wherein data can be written into the storage unit and data stored within the storage unit can be read out. Furthermore, the processing unit 108 together with the storage unit is adapted to execute a plurality of programs stored in the storage unit. Furthermore, the processing unit 108 is adapted to manage and execute a plurality of functions using further components of the case 500, which will be described further hereinafter.

    [0124] In this embodiment, as mentioned before, the case 500 further comprises a plurality of sensor units 110 (see figure 8), adapted to detect a state of a plurality of predefined states of the case 500, wherein the case 500 is adapted to indicate the detected state of the plurality of predefined states of the case 500 via the display unit 120. In such an embodiment, a user may be provided with a plurality of useful information allowing for an optimized operation and/or use of the case 500 and/or of the electronic smoking device 10 received by the case 500. In figure 8, the sensor units 110 are illustrated as components, which are integrated in or connected to the processing unit 108. Even though in the embodiment described herein, the sensor units 110 are electrically connected to the processing unit 108 and operable - meaning that they receive control signals - by the processing unit 108, the sensor units 110 may also be realized as separate autonomous components with own processing units. In this embodiment, the processing unit 108 is configured to cause the display driver unit 125 to display icons on the display unit 120 when one of the predefined states is detected.

    [0125] In more detail, in this embodiment, the plurality of sensor units 110 comprises an orientation sensor unit 111, adapted to detect an orientation of the case 500 with respect to a reference line defined by the force of gravity. An advantage of such a case 500 may be that the orientation of the case 500 can be determined, allowing e.g. for an improved refilling of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion 400. In this embodiment, the reference line defined by the force of gravity of the earth is locally congruent with the (main) effective direction of the force of gravity of the earth acting on the mass of the case 500.

    [0126] Hence, in this embodiment, the orientation of the case 500 is determined based on gravity, in more detail, based on the planetary gravitational field of the earth. Moreover, an optimal refill orientation of the case 500 is defined as an orientation of the case 500 in which a centre line L that is parallel to the height H of the case 500 and that goes through a centre of the case 500 is parallel or at least substantially parallel to the (main) effective direction of the force of gravity of the earth that acts on the mass of the case 500, wherein the case 500 is in an upright position. When the case 500 is in an upright position, the smaller edge side wall 503-1 of the case 500 that is more remote from the refill interface element 160 is arranged closer to the surface of the earth. Expressed in other words, the case 500 has an optimal refill orientation when the height H of the case 500 as defined hereinbefore is parallel to the (main) effective direction of the force of gravity of the earth that acts on the mass of the case 500 and when the case 500 is in an upright position. In the upright position of the case 500, the lower distal end of the primary reception portion 410 is positioned closer to the surface of the earth than the upper distal end of the primary reception portion 420.

    [0127] In figure 11a and 11b, the orientation of the case 500 having an optimal refill orientation is schematically illustrated with respect to a Cartesian coordinate system. In figure 11a and 11b, the x-y-plane of the Cartesian coordinate system is parallel to the surface of the earth in the position of the case 500. The z-axis of the Cartesian coordinate system, being perpendicular to the x- and y-axis, stands upright on the surface of the earth and in the optimal refill orientation of the case 500 is parallel to the height H of the case 500 and parallel to the idealized effective direction of the force of gravity Fg which acts on the mass of the case 500 respectively. In more detail, in the optimal refill orientation of the case 500, a centre line L being parallel to the height H of the case 500 and going through a geometrical centre of the case 500 is parallel to the z-axis and to the idealized effective direction of the force of gravity Fg which acts on the mass of the case 500 respectively. In figure 11a, the case 500 is shown from the side, wherein the force of gravity Fg - acting on every mass point of the case 500 respectively - is illustrated in a simplified form as a single arrow being parallel to the height H of the case 500, parallel to the centre line L through the geometrical centre of case 500 and parallel to the z-axis of the Cartesian coordinate system.

    [0128] As shown in figure 11a, the case 500 has an upright orientation, meaning that the lower distal end of the primary reception portion 410 is closer to the surface of the earth than the upper distal end of the primary reception portion 420. In this embodiment of the case 500, the lower distal end of the primary reception portion 410 is the end of the primary reception portion 410 that is more remote from the refill interface element 160, from the display unit 120 and from the secondary reception portion 100 than the upper distal end of the primary reception portion 420.

    [0129] In figure 11b, the situation is shown from above, giving a view along the height H of the case 500. In figure 11b, it can be seen that the centre line L goes through the geometrical centre of the case 500, piercing through both protrusions 415 of the primary reception portion 400 respectively. Of course, the optimal refill orientation of the case 500 is independent of the orientation of the case 500 with respect to the x-axis and to the y-axis, as long as the z-axis is parallel to the centre line L. In more detail, also when the case 500 as shown in figure 11b is rotated around the centre line L and thus around the z-axis, the case 500 still is in the optimal refill orientation.

    [0130] In this embodiment, the orientation sensor unit 111 exemplarily comprises a plurality of accelerometers. However, in other embodiments of a case, the case may comprise an absolute position transducer unit and/or an inertial measurement unit and/or at least one Micro-Electro-Mechanical System, MEMS, suitable to detect an orientation of a case or any other kind of orientation sensor unit. Such an embodiment of a case 500 allows for the case 500 to autonomously detect whether the case 500 is in a position suitable for a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500.

    [0131] Moreover, in this embodiment, the case 500 is further adapted to detect whether the current orientation of the case 500 is within a set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the case 500 may be adapted to decide whether the initiation and execution of a refill process is possible in the orientation the case 500 is currently in or whether a user should be advised to alter the orientation of the case 500. Expressed in other words, in this embodiment, the case 500, using the processing unit 108, is adapted to compare the detected current orientation of the case 500 with a set of predefined orientations, allowing for the case 500 to determine whether the current orientation of the case 500 allows for a refill of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception cavity 400 of the case 500 or not. In this embodiment, the set of predefined orientations is exemplarily stored in the aforementioned storage unit. However, the set of predefined orientations can also be stored in any other form or calculated in advance of or after a detection of the orientation of the case 500, wherein the calculation can also be dependent on a plurality of different conditions.

    [0132] In this embodiment, the predefined orientations of the set of predefined orientations all have in common that they represent orientations of the case 500 in which the operation of the liquid refill system 190 is not possible or at least disadvantageous, as the pump mechanism would need to work against - and not with - the force of gravity. In this embodiment, the predefined orientations of the set of predefined orientations exemplarily all represent an orientation of the case 500 in which the case 500 is inclined with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity to a degree which is disadvantageous for the process of refilling the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10. Expressed in other words, in this embodiment, the predefined orientations of the set of predefined orientations all have in common that they represent orientations of the case 500 in which the orientation of the case 500 deviates from the optimal refill orientation of the case 500 to an extend in which the operation of the liquid refill system 190 and the refilling of a liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500 is not possible or at least disadvantageous.

    [0133] In figure 12, the set of predefined orientations of the case 500 is schematically indicated with respect to the Cartesian coordinate system shown in figures 11a and 11b and described hereinbefore and with respect to the aforementioned centre line L of the case 500 as defined above. In more detail, also in figure 12, the x-y-plane of the Cartesian coordinate system is parallel to the surface of the earth in the position of the case 500. The z-axis, being perpendicular to the x- and y-axis, stands upright on the surface of the earth and in the optimal refill orientation of the case 500 is parallel to the height H of the case 500 and to the idealized effective direction of the force of gravity Fg which acts on the mass of the case 500. Also in figure 12, the centre line L being parallel to the height H of the case 500 and going through the geometrical centre of the case 500 (as illustrated in figures 11a and 11b) is parallel to the z-axis and to the idealized effective direction of the force of gravity Fg which acts on the mass of the case 500. In figure 12, the set of predefined orientations of the case 500 is illustrated with respect to the optimal refill orientation of the case 500 and with respect to the centre line L of a case 500 being in the optimal refill orientation.

    [0134] In this embodiment, when a case 500 does not have the optimal refill orientation - being the orientation most suitable for a refill - it can have an orientation which is still suitable for a refill or an orientation which is not suitable for a refill, depending on the incline of the respective centre line L', L" with respect to the centre line L the case 500 has when it is in the optimal refill orientation. In the following, the centre line L which the case 500 has, when it is in the optimal refill orientation, will be denoted as the optimal refill centre line L.

    [0135] In this embodiment, when - with respect to the Cartesian coordinate system - the centre line L' of a case 500 is inclined with respect to the optimal refill centre line L / the z-axis, such that the inclined centre line L' encloses an angle of β ≤ 45° with the optimal refill centre line L / the z-axis, it is detected that the case 500 has an orientation that is suitable for a refill. A few exemplary centre lines L' corresponding to such orientations of the case 500 which are suitable for a refill are shown in figure 12. However, when the centre line L" of a case 500 is inclined with respect to the optimal refill centre line L / the z-axis, such that the inclined centre line L" encloses an angle of β > 45° with the optimal refill centre line L / the z-axis, it is detected that the case 500 has an orientation that is not suitable for a refill. Also a few exemplary centre lines L" corresponding to such orientations of the case 500 which are not suitable for a refill are shown in figure 12.

    [0136] In figure 12, all possible centre lines L' of cases 500 which belong to an orientation of the case 500 which is suitable for a refill together form an imaginary refill cone C. Furthermore, all possible centre lines L" of cases 500 belonging to an orientation of the case 500 which is not suitable for a refill together form an imaginary sphere S not comprising the imaginary refill cone C. In this embodiment, all orientations of the case 500 belonging to the imaginary sphere S which does not comprise the imaginary refill cone C together represent the set of predefined orientations. Expressed in other words, when the centre line L" of a case 500 is inclined with respect to the optimal refill centre line L / the z-axis, such that the inclined centre line L" encloses an angle of β > 45° with the optimal refill centre line L / the z-axis, it is detected that the case 500 has an orientation that is equal to an orientation forming part of the set of predefined orientations and hence is within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity.

    [0137] However, in other embodiments, another set of predefined orientations or another formula for the calculation of the same can be set, comprising other predefined orientations. For example, the aforementioned angle β dividing between orientations which are suitable and which are not suitable for a refill may be equal to 25°, 30°, 35°, 40°, 50°, 55°, 60°, 65°, 70° or equal to any other value. Furthermore, the set of predefined orientations can be constituted of orientations of the case 500 not only taking into account for the incline of the centre line L', L" with respect to the optimal refill centre line L / the z-axis, but alternatively or additionally also for the specific orientation of the case 500 with respect to the x- axis, the y-axis and the z-axis. For example, while an orientation of the case 500 having an inclined centre line L' and a specific orientation x1, y1, z1 with respect to the x-, y- and z-axis may belong to an orientation that is declared / defined as an orientation suitable for a refill, an orientation of the case 500 having the same inclined centre line L' but another specific orientation x2, y2, z2 with respect to the x-, y- and z-axis - hence being rotated around the same inclined centre line L' - may not represent an orientation that is declared/defined as an orientation suitable for a refill. In this embodiment, the calculation and/or processing performed during the detection by the orientation sensor unit 111 is exemplarily performed by the processing unit 108. However, also other embodiments of cases 500 can be realized comprising orientation sensor units 111 which are autonomously adapted to perform the aforementioned calculation/processing and which are not connected to a processing unit.

    [0138] In this embodiment, the case 500 is adapted to display a first predefined icon 122 on the display unit 120 as long as the orientation sensor unit 111 detects that the current orientation of the case 500 is within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. An advantage of such a case 500 may be that it is indicated to the user of the case 500 that he needs to alter the orientation of the same in order to allow for the initiation and execution of a refill process. Hence, in such an embodiment, the case 500 allows for an energy-efficient refill process for the refill of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500.

    [0139] In more detail, in this embodiment of the case 500, the processing unit 108 - interacting with the display driver unit 125 - causes the display unit 120 to display a first predefined icon 122 on the display unit 120 as long as the orientation of the case 500 is equal to a predefined orientation of the plurality of predefined orientations. Hence, the first predefined icon 122 is displayed via the display unit 120 as long as the case 500 has an orientation that is not suitable for a refill of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion 400 of the case 500. In this embodiment, the first predefined icon 122 displayable via the display unit 120 exemplarily illustrates a hand holding a case, with an arrow indicating that the case needs to be brought into an upright position. This first predefined icon 122 can be seen e.g. in figure 6 and in figure 14a which will be described further hereinafter. However, the first predefined icon 122 can also illustrate any other kind of icon. Moreover, in other embodiments, a case 500 can also be adapted to display a first predefined icon 122 on the display unit 120 as long as the orientation sensor unit 111 detects that the current orientation of the case 500 is not within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity.

    [0140] Furthermore, in this embodiment, the case 500 is adapted to cause the power source 130 to supply energy to the pump system 150 as long as the orientation sensor unit 111 detects that the current orientation of the case 500 is not within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the case 500 is adapted to automatically operate the pump system 150 of the case 500 when the current orientation of the case 500 is suitable for refilling of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion of the case 500. Expressed in other words, in this embodiment of the case 500, the case 500 is adapted to cause the power source 130 to supply power to the actuator 155 of the pump system 150 as long as the orientation sensor unit 111 detects that the current orientation of the case 500 is not equal to an orientation that is equal to an orientation of the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. Hence, in this embodiment of the case 500, the case 500 is adapted to cause the power source 130 to supply energy or power to the actuator 155 of the pump system 150 as long as the orientation sensor unit 111 detects that the current orientation of the case 500 has a current orientation that is suitable for a refilling of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion of the case 500.

    [0141] Moreover, in this embodiment of the case 500, the case 500 exemplarily further comprises a detection sensor unit 113 (see figure 8), adapted to detect whether an electronic smoking device 10 is arranged within the primary reception portion 400 and whether the refill interface element 160 is in the insertion position. Furthermore, when in this embodiment of the case 500, it is detected that an electronic smoking device 10 is not arranged within the primary reception portion 400 or that an electronic smoking device 10 is arranged within the primary reception portion 400 but that the refill interface element 160 is not in the insertion position, power is not supplied to the pump system 150. However, in other embodiments of a case, a case can be adapted to cause the power source 130 to supply energy to the pump system 150 only as long as the orientation sensor unit 111 detects that the current orientation of the case 500 is within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. Furthermore, in other embodiments of cases, a detection sensor unit 113 can also be omitted.

    [0142] In this embodiment, the case 500 is adapted to display a second predefined icon 123 on the display unit 120 as long as energy is supplied to the pump system 150. Such an embodiment may have the advantage that the operation of the pump system 150 is indicated to a user of the case 500, allowing for a more secure handling of the case 500 and for a more secure operation of the liquid refill system 190. In more detail, the display of the second predefined icon 123 on the display unit 120 may further prevent the user of the case 500 from undertaking attempts to open the case 500 during a refill process that is in progress. In this embodiment, the second predefined icon 123 exemplarily illustrates a drop symbol. The second predefined icon 123 can be seen e.g. in figure 6 but also in figure 14b which will be described further below. However, the first predefined icon 122 can also illustrate any other kind of icon. Furthermore, in this embodiment, power is only supplied to the orientation sensor unit 111 and to the detection sensor unit 113 when the user switches on the switching element 159 in order to activate the liquid refill system 190 and to transfer the case 500 into a refill mode.

    [0143] For the sake of a better understanding, the operation of the case 500 with respect to the liquid refill system 190 and with the respect to the refilling of a liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the case 500 will be described referring to figure 13. Figure 13 shows an operation method or algorithm of the liquid refill system 190 implemented in this embodiment of the case 500. The operation method in this embodiment is exemplarily executed by the processing unit 108 interacting with further elements, components and units of the case 500, especially with the display unit 120, the display driver unit 125, the orientation sensor unit 111, the detection sensor unit 113 and the pump system 150 of the case 500. However, in other embodiments of cases, such an operation method and also other operation methods can be executed by other elements, components and units of a case.

    [0144] The operation of the case 500 with respect to the liquid refill system 190 is initiated when the user switches on the switching element 159 to activate the liquid refill system 190 which will - as a first step S1 of the operation method - transfer the case 500 into a refill mode. In the refill mode of the case 500, a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the case 500 is possible. When the case 500 has been transferred into the refill mode, the orientation sensor unit 111 and the detection sensor unit 113 are supplied with power from the power source 130 and hence are operated in a second step S2 of the operation method. In a third step S3 of the operation method, the data captured by the detection sensor unit 113 is evaluated to detect whether an electronic smoking device 10 is inserted into the case 500 and correctly received by the primary reception portion 400. If it is detected that an electronic smoking device 10 is not inserted into the case 500 or not correctly received by the primary reception portion 400, this will have the first result R1 that power is not supplied to the pump system 150 and that the operation method is restarted with the second step S2 as long as the switching element 159 is in an on-state. If however in the third step S3 it is detected that an electronic smoking device 10 is inserted into the case 500 and correctly received by the primary reception portion 400, other data captured by the detection sensor unit 113 is evaluated in the fourth step S4 of the operation method to detect whether the refill interface element 160 is in the insertion position, which is only possible when the first and the second hollow needle elements 161, 162 of the refill interface element 160 are correctly inserted into the refill openings 33-1, 33-2 of the outer refill interface portion 33 of the electronic smoking device 10. If the evaluation shows that the refill interface element 160 is not in the insertion position, this will also have the first result R1 that power is not supplied to the pump system 150 and hence that the method is restarted with the second step S2 as long as the switching element 159 is in an on-state.

    [0145] If however in the fourth step S4 it is detected that the refill interface element 160 is in the insertion position, the data captured by the orientation sensor unit 111 will be evaluated in the fifth step S5 of the operation method to detect whether the current orientation of the case 500 is within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity Fg of the earth. If this evaluation shows that the current orientation of the case 500 is within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity Fg of the earth, this will have two results, the first result R1 and a second result R2. According to the first result R1, power is not supplied to the pump system 150 and hence the method is restarted with the second step S2 as long as the switching element 159 is in an on state. According to the second result R2, the first predefined icon 122 is displayed via the display unit 120 as long as the performance/execution of the fifth step S5 of the operation method in a re-run of the operation method - and hence the evaluation of the data captured by the orientation sensor unit 111 - results in the detection of a current orientation of the case 500 which is not equal to an orientation of the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity Fg of the earth.

    [0146] Expressed in other words, the first predefined icon is displayed via the display unit 120 as long as - in a re-run of the operation method - it is detect that the case 500 has a current orientation which is not within the set of predefined orientations and thus represents an orientation that is suitable for a refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the case 500. If in the fifth step S5 of the operation method, it is detected that the case 500 has a current orientation which is not within the set of predefined orientations and thus represents an orientation that is suitable for the aforementioned refilling, this will have two further results, a third result R3 and a fourth R4. The third result R3 is that energy provided by the power source 130 is supplied to the pump system 150, in more detail to the actuator 155 of the pump system 150 and hence that liquid is pumped into the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10. The fourth result R4 is that the second predefined icon 123 is displayed via the display unit 120. The actions belonging to the third and fourth result R3 and R4 - the refilling of the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 and the display of the second predefined icon 123 - are performed as long as the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 is not completely filled, as long as the liquid refill system 190 is not deactivated via the switching element 159 and as long as an evaluation of the data captured by the orientation sensor unit 111 does not have the first and second result R1, R2.

    [0147] In this embodiment, the case 500 further comprises a power source sensor unit 112, adapted to detect the state of charge of the power source 130. In such an embodiment, the user of the case 500 can be warned before the case 500 runs out of energy, allowing for the user to connect the case 500 to an external power supply via the electrical interface 135. The connection to the external power supply allows for the power source 130 of the case 500 to be recharged via the external power supply. Hence, in such an embodiment, the power source sensor unit 112 allows for an optimized usage of the case 500.

    [0148] In this embodiment, the power source sensor unit 112 is exemplarily also electrically connected to the processing unit 108 and adapted to measure an Open Circuit Voltage, OCV, of the power source 130 of the case 500 and to determine the state of charge, SOC, of the power source 130 via the measured Open Circuit Voltage. However, any other power source sensor units may come to use, using other elements and methods to determine or derive the state of charge of the power source 130 of the case 500.

    [0149] Such other power source sensor units may be adapted to perform current based SOC estimation methods, as e.g. the so called Coulomb Counting. However, also other power source sensor units may come to use which are adapted to perform an estimation of the SOC of the power source 130 of the case 500 from internal impedance measurements of the same or via the determination or estimation of other parameters.

    [0150] Moreover, in this embodiment, the case 500 is further adapted to display a third predefined icon 124 on the display unit 120 when the current state of charge of the power source 130 drops below a predefined state of charge. In such an embodiment, the user is advantageously warned about the low state of charge of the power source 130 via the display of a third predefined icon 124 displayed on the display unit 120. This allows for an improved operation of the case 500 and further conserves the power source 130. In this embodiment, the third predefined icon 124 exemplarily illustrates a battery symbol or a battery icon which is crossed out. The third predefined icon 124 can also be seen e.g. in figure 6 but also in figure 14c which will be described further below. However, the third predefined icon 124 can also illustrate any other kind of icon.

    [0151] As mentioned, the first, second and third predefined icons 122, 123, 124 are further shown in figures 14a to 14c. In more detail, in figure 14a, the first predefined icon 122 representing a tilt icon is displayed via the display unit 120. In figure 14b, the second predefined icon 123 is displayed via the display unit 120 and in figure 14c, the third predefined icon 124 is displayed via the display unit 120. The positions of the icons 122, 123, 124 on the display unit 120 when displayed may differ from the positions as shown in figures 14a to 14c. Furthermore, also other icons may be displayed via the display unit 120 of a case 500. In more detail, also in this embodiment, the processing unit 108 is further configured to cause the display driver unit 125 to display other icons, e.g. icons corresponding to further predefined modes of operations of the case 500.

    [0152] Furthermore, in this embodiment, the case 500 further comprises a communication unit 105 (see figure 8) adapted for a communication with a mobile terminal device 600 via a wireless communication network. In such an embodiment, for example data that is sensed via a sensor unit 110, 111, 112, 113 and/or stored can be processed and/or statistically evaluated using e.g. a mobile terminal device 600, e.g. a smartphone, a computer or a tablet. This allows for an ameliorated use of the case 500.

    [0153] Expressed in other words and in more detail, the case 500 further comprises a communication unit 105 and electrical contacts 175 for the electrical connection to the electrical interface portion 40 of the electronic smoking device 10 described hereinbefore, wherein the communication unit 105 of the case 500 is further adapted to receive data from the device communication unit 45 of the electronic smoking device 10 described hereinbefore. In such an embodiment, the case 500 may advantageously be adapted to communicate with the electronic smoking device 10, allowing to transmit data from the electronic smoking device 10 to the case 500 and vice versa, which allows for an optimized use of the electronic smoking device 10 and of the case 500 and especially of the data captured and gathered via the sensor units 110, 111, 112, 113 of the case 500 and via the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 of the electronic smoking device 10.

    [0154] In this embodiment, the communication unit 105 is exemplarily realized as a combined WLAN and LTE communication module. Accordingly, the wireless communication network via which the combined WLAN and LTE communication module is adapted to communicate is the Wireless Local Area Network, WLAN, and the LTE network. However, the communication unit 105 can also be realized as any other communication module and the wireless communication network via which a communication is established can be any other network, e.g. a 3G, 4G or 5G network, a Bluetooth network or a near field communication, NFC, based network or any other network suitable for a communication with a mobile terminal device 600. In this embodiment, also the communication unit 105 is realized as a component of the processing unit 108. However, the communication unit 105 may also be a unit that is separate from the processing unit 108. In this embodiment, also the operation of the communication unit 105 is controlled via the processing unit 108.

    [0155] Moreover, in this embodiment, the case 500 further comprises a communication unit adapted for a wired communication, which in this embodiment is connected to the electrical interface 135 as described hereinbefore. Hence, in this embodiment, the electrical interface 135 is exemplarily also used to transfer data to the case 500 and to transfer data from the case 500 to an external unit electrically connected to the case 500 via the electrical interface 135. Furthermore, in this embodiment, the processing unit 108 is further connected to the electrical contacts 175 and adapted to exchange data with the control electronics 22 of the electronic smoking device 10, for example user data, authentication data or data related to the use of the electronic smoking device 10. Furthermore, also the electrical interface 135 of the case 500 in this embodiment is electrically connected to the processing unit 108.

    [0156] In more detail, in this embodiment, the communication unit 105 is adapted to transmit data of all of the aforementioned sensor units 110, 111, 112, 113 of the case 500 to the mobile terminal device 600 via the wireless communication network. Such an embodiment allows for a detailed analysis of a consumers vaping behaviour and further allows for a user to e.g. easily check a status of the case 500, for example of the state of charge of the power source 130 of the case 500 or the amount of liquid contained within a liquid cartridge 60 received by the secondary reception portion 100, without that the user has to be near to the case 500.

    [0157] Furthermore, in this embodiment, the communication unit 105 is adapted to transmit data of an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion 400 to the mobile terminal device 600. In such an embodiment, also the data of an electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the case 500 and received by the primary reception portion 100 of the case 500 can be transmitted to the mobile terminal device 600 of a user of the case 500. As mentioned, the data of the electronic smoking device 10 in this embodiment also comprises the data captured and gathered by the device sensor units 50, especially by the device power sensor 51, by the device humidity sensor 52 and by the device refill sensor 53.

    [0158] Hence, in such an embodiment, the handling of both the case 500 and the electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the case 500 is further eased, as the user can also check e.g. the state an electronic smoking device 10 received by the primary reception portion 400 is in. In more detail, the user e.g. may check how much liquid is left within the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 arranged within the case 500 and/or how much power is left within the power source unit 18 of the electronic smoking device 10 or any other state the electronic smoking device 10 is in, just using his mobile terminal device 600, e.g. his smartphone and without that the case 500 is touched. This data can further be combined with other data and with a plurality of user interfaces, e.g. in an application being operated on the mobile terminal device 600.

    [0159] In figure 15a and 15b, it is illustrated how data transmitted by the communication unit 105 of the case 500 to a mobile terminal device 600 of a user of the case 500, which in this embodiment exemplarily is realized as a smartphone, can be used within the framework of an application running on the mobile terminal device 600. In this embodiment, when the electronic smoking device 10 is received by the primary reception portion 400, data captured of the aforementioned device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 of the electronic smoking device 10 is transmitted via the electrical terminals 41 of the electrical interface portion 40 of the electronic smoking device 10 and via the electrical contacts 175 of the case 500 to the case 500. The data received by the case 500 can e.g. be stored in the storage unit. Via the communication unit 105, this data received via the electrical contacts 175 is then wirelessly transmitted to the mobile terminal device 600 where it is illustrated and displayed in a transformed and processed manner. For example, in Figure 15a, the data captured by the humidity sensors and by the power sensor unit of the electronic smoking device 10 is illustrated in a graphically optimized manner, showing that the power source unit 18 is charged to a degree of 74% and that the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 is filled to a degree of 41%.

    [0160] Via the user interfaces displayed on the display of the mobile terminal device 600 below the graphical image illustrating the shape of the electronic smoking device 10, new consumable liquid for the liquid reservoir 34 of the electronic smoking device 10 may be purchased via the wireless communication network, e.g. via the Internet, or a recharge of the power source unit 18 of the electronic smoking device 10 using the power source 130 of the case 500 may be initiated wirelessly via the wireless communication network. However, also statistical evaluations, e.g. of the vaping behavior of the user of the case 500 and of the corresponding electronic smoking device 10 may be illustrated/accessible using the mobile terminal device 600.

    [0161] In figure 15b, a user interface referring to the case 500 is illustrated on the display of the mobile terminal device 600. Via the user interface shown in figure 15b, the current state of the case 500, e.g. being in the refill mode, can be seen and wirelessly altered via the wireless communication network. For example, data gathered by the sensor units 110, e.g. by the orientation sensor unit 111, by the power source unit 112 and by the detection sensor unit 113 can be processed, evaluated and illustrated on the display of the mobile terminal device 600. In more detail, e.g. the amount of liquid that is left in a liquid cartridge 60 that is inserted into the secondary reception portion 100 may be illustrated. Moreover, the state of charge of the power source 130 of the case 500 may be illustrated on the display of the mobile terminal device 600. Furthermore, via the user interfaces displayed on the display of the mobile terminal device 600 below the graphical image illustrating the shape of the case 500, new liquid cartridges 60 for the case 500 may be purchased via the wireless communication network, e.g. via the Internet. Furthermore, the processing unit 108 of the case 500 may be remotely controlled via the mobile terminal device 600, wherein interactions with a user interface displayed on the display of the mobile terminal device 600 and performed by the user of the mobile terminal device 600 (and the case 500) may cause the processing unit 108 of the case 500 to control the components of the case 500 according to the interactions of the user with the user interface. However, the data captured and gathered by the device sensor units 50, 51, 52, 53 of the electronic smoking device 10 can also directly and wirelessly be transmitted via the device communication unit 45 of the electronic smoking device 10 to the mobile terminal device 600.

    [0162] As already mentioned, in this embodiment, the case 500 comprises a plurality of components that are arranged within the first and the second wing element 200, 300. However, other embodiments of cases may be realized with other components that may fundamentally differ in function and structure from the components as described hereinbefore.

    [0163] For example, the pump system 150 may not comprise an actuator 155 and/or an actuator element 158. Furthermore, other actuators and other actuator elements may come to use. For example, a pump system can be provided which comprises a blower component, adapted to provide a liquid cartridge with an overpressure in order to automatically blow out liquid contained in a liquid cartridge 60 into the refill interface element 160. In such an embodiment, the pump system 150 may not comprise a threaded rod 158-3. Furthermore, also embodiments of cases may be realized that comprise a manual pump system. Moreover, the elements and means provided to transport liquid within the case may differ from the elements and means described hereinbefore. Further, the electrical components as described hereinbefore may fundamentally differ from the electrical components of other embodiments.

    [0164] According to an embodiment, it is provided an electronic smoking device. The electronic smoking device comprises a power supply portion, comprising a power source unit and an atomizer/liquid reservoir portion, comprising a liquid reservoir, and an atomizer operable when connected to the power source unit to atomize liquid stored in the liquid reservoir. The liquid reservoir comprises an outer refill interface portion which comprises a first refill opening, allowing for the refilling of the liquid reservoir with a liquid. The electronic smoking device further comprises a ring-element arranged around the outer refill interface portion, the ring-element being rotatable from a refill position, in which the first refill opening is accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device, to a covering position, in which the ring-element covers the first refill opening.

    [0165] An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that a refilling of the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device can be performed in an easy and spill-safe manner, as the electronic smoking device can easily be brought into a refilling state. Simultaneously, the electronic smoking device can easily be re-transferred into a non-refilling state in which the aforementioned refill openings are covered and further leak-safely sealed. Hence, after the refill process is finished, the electronic smoking device can easily and leak-safely be used. In this embodiment, when in the covering position, the ring-element is adapted to cover the first and the second refill opening with respect to the outside of the electronic smoking device.

    [0166] Preferably, the outer refill interface portion comprises a second refill opening, allowing for the suction of air out of the liquid reservoir, wherein in the refill position of the ring-element, also the second refill opening is accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device, and wherein in the covering position of the ring-element, the ring-element covers also the second refill opening. In such an embodiment, air that is ousted out of the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device during a refilling of the same can be recaptured by the refill system coming to use via the second refill opening. This will prevent liquid from being spilled during a refilling of the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device.

    [0167] In a preferred embodiment, at least one hole is arranged within the ring-element, the at least one hole being aligned with the first refill opening when the ring-element is in the refill position. In such an embodiment, the refill opening is merely accessible when aligned with the hole provided within the ring-element, which further reduces spilling of the liquid, as not the whole diameter of the refill opening is accessible from an outside of the electronic smoking device, respectively when the ring-element is in the refill position.

    [0168] Preferably, the first refill opening comprises a sealing and/or a membrane. In such an embodiment, liquid is contained within the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device via the sealings even when the refill openings are accessible from an outside of the liquid reservoir which will further reduce spilling of liquid during a refill process of the liquid reservoir.

    [0169] In a preferred embodiment, the sealing and/or the membrane comprises silicone. Such sealings are leak-safe which is due to the so called skim-off-effect.

    [0170] Preferably, the electronic smoking device further comprises at least one device sensor unit. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the electronic smoking device can measure and/or detect a plurality of different states the electronic smoking device is currently in via the device sensor units. Hence, such device sensor units allow for an improved usage of the electronic smoking device, as a user may be warned of critical situations occurring during the usage of the electronic smoking device, e.g. when the battery is running out of power or when the liquid reservoir is running out of liquid. Furthermore, data gathered/captured by the device sensor units can advantageously be evaluated and processed.

    [0171] In a preferred embodiment, the at least one device sensor unit comprises a device power sensor, adapted to detect a state of charge, SOC, of the power source unit. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the user of the electronic smoking device can be warned before the electronic smoking device runs out of power, allowing for the user to connect the electronic smoking device to an external power supply via the electrical terminals of the electrical interface portion before the power supply e.g. to the processing unit of the electronic smoking device is interrupted or breaks down.

    [0172] Preferably, the at least one device sensor unit comprises a device humidity sensor, adapted to detect the amount of liquid left within the liquid reservoir. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that a filling state of the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device may be detected and signalled to a user of the electronic smoking device, e.g. allowing for a user of the electronic smoking device to be warned about an insufficient state or level of liquid within the liquid reservoir.

    [0173] In a preferred embodiment, the at least one device sensor unit comprises a device refill sensor, adapted to detect if an object is inserted into the first refill opening. In such an embodiment, it can be advantageously signalled to a user whether e.g. a hollow needle element, designed for a refilling of the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device, is inserted or correctly inserted into the first refill opening.

    [0174] Preferably, the electronic smoking device further comprises a device communication unit electrically connected to an electrical interface portion of the electronic smoking device, the electrical interface portion being adapted for an electrical connection with electrical contacts of an external unit. In such an embodiment, the electronic smoking device may transmit and receive data to and from an external unit, allowing for an eased usage of the electronic smoking device as data of the electronic smoking device may easily be processed and evaluated.

    [0175] In a preferred embodiment, the device communication unit is electrically connected to the at least one device sensor unit and is adapted to transmit data captured by the at least one device sensor unit to the electrical interface portion. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the data captured and gathered by the device sensor units may be transmitted to the external unit, e.g. for further processing and evaluation of the aforementioned data. Furthermore, the data transmitted can be processed by an external unit and used to signal, e.g. display via a display unit, a state of the electronic smoking device to the user of the electronic smoking device and the external unit.

    [0176] Preferably, the device communication unit is adapted for a communication with a mobile terminal device via a wireless communication network. In such an embodiment, the electronic smoking device may wirelessly transmit data of the electronic smoking device to e.g. a smartphone, allowing for an even easier processing and evaluation of for example the data captured and gathered by the device sensor units.

    [0177] In a preferred embodiment, the device communication unit is adapted to receive commands for the transmission of data by an external unit electrically connected to the electronic smoking device via the electrical interface portion. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the electronic smoking device and especially the transmission of data from the electronic smoking device can easily be controlled via the external unit.

    [0178] According to a further embodiment, it is provided a case for the electronic smoking device. The case comprises a primary reception portion, adapted to receive an electronic smoking device, and a first and a second wing element, each comprising a substantially closed compartment and being hingedly connected to the primary reception portion respectively. The wing elements are each pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion and adapted to fix an electronic smoking device arranged within the primary reception portion to the case.

    [0179] Such a case allows for an easy and safe transport of an electronic smoking device, which on the one hand may easily be fixed to the case and on the other hand may easily be released from the case without much effort to be invested. Furthermore, such a case is compact while simultaneously allowing for the provision of a plurality of further functionalities.

    [0180] Preferably, the case further comprises at least one communication unit and electrical contacts for the electrical connection to the electrical interface portion of the electronic smoking device, wherein the at least one communication unit of the case is further adapted to receive data from the device communication unit of the electronic smoking device. In such an embodiment, the case may advantageously be adapted to communicate with the electronic smoking device, allowing to transmit data from the electronic smoking device to the case and vice versa, which allows for an optimized use of the electronic smoking device and of the case respectively and especially for an optimized exchange of data captured and gathered via the sensor units of the case and via the device sensor units of the electronic smoking device.

    [0181] According to another embodiment, it is provided a case for an electronic smoking device. The case comprises a primary reception portion, adapted to receive an electronic smoking device, and a first and a second wing element, each comprising a substantially closed compartment and being hingedly connected to the primary reception portion respectively. The wing elements are each pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion and adapted to fix an electronic smoking device arranged within the primary reception portion to the case, wherein at least one of the first and the second wing element comprises at least one sensor unit.

    [0182] Such a case allows for an easy and safe transport of an electronic smoking device, which on the one hand may easily be fixed to the case and on the other hand may easily be released from the case without much effort to be invested. Via the at least one sensor unit, the usage of the case and of an electronic smoking device arranged therein can be assisted and fundamentally eased, increasing the convenience of a user using the case and the electronic smoking device received by the same. Furthermore, such a case is compact while simultaneously allowing for the provision of a plurality of further functionalities.

    [0183] Preferably, the first and the second wing element each comprise a closed compartment.

    [0184] Preferably, in a first non-pivoted state of the wing elements, an electronic smoking device arranged within the primary reception portion is immovably fixed to the case via the wing elements, and wherein in a second pivoted state of the wing elements, an electronic smoking device arranged in the primary reception portion is released and removable from the case.

    [0185] Preferably, the primary reception portion is arranged in a center of the case and/or comprises protrusions extending from distal, opposite ends of the primary reception portion, wherein the protrusions are adapted to hold an electronic smoking device therein between. In such an embodiment, an electronic smoking device is advantageously held, fixed and/or secured by the protrusions so that it does not slip out of the case when the wing elements are pivoted.

    [0186] In a preferred embodiment, at least one surface of the reception portion and/or of the first and/or second wing element is concave and/or corresponds to a surface of an electronic smoking device receivable by the primary reception portion. In such an embodiment, the case allows to tightly and strongly hold the electronic smoking device in a position predefined by the shape of the respective surfaces which correspond to the electronic smoking device when arranged within the primary reception portion in a predefined orientation. Preferably, the at least one surface is shaped to form-fit with the shape of the surface of an electronic smoking device receivable by the primary reception portion.

    [0187] Preferably, the first and/or the second wing element comprises a secondary reception portion, adapted to receive a liquid cartridge that is adapted to contain a liquid. In such an embodiment, the case can easily be provided with a replaceable liquid cartridge that allows for a refill of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device. This may increase the duration an electronic smoking device that is carried within the case can be used for vaping.

    [0188] In a preferred embodiment, the secondary reception portion is realized as a fraction, especially as a corner fraction of the respective wing element, the fraction being reversibly detachable from the wing element. In such an embodiment, the secondary reception portion can easily be pulled off or slid off the first wing element, which allows for an eased recharge of the case when the liquid cartridge is empty and needs to be replaced. In general, the handling of the case is eased when such a secondary reception portion is provided.

    [0189] Preferably, the case further comprises a liquid refill system. The liquid refill system comprises a liquid inlet, fluidically connectable to a cartridge outlet of a liquid cartridge received by the secondary reception portion, a liquid outlet, fluidically connected to the liquid inlet, and a pump system, comprising an actuator, the pump system being adapted to provide liquid from a liquid cartridge received by the secondary reception portion to the liquid outlet via the liquid inlet. In such an embodiment, the case has a refill mechanism advantageously allowing for an effortless refill of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device arranged within the primary reception portion of the case. Expressed in other words, such a case allows to pump liquid from the liquid cartridge into the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device which is arranged within the case.

    [0190] In a preferred embodiment, the actuator is adapted to drive an actuator element that is configured to interact with a component of a liquid cartridge received by the secondary reception portion upon an activation of the actuator. In such an embodiment, merely the actuator needs to be operated in order to pump/push liquid from the liquid cartridge into the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device. Preferably, the actuator element is realized as a gear or as a blower component.

    [0191] Preferably, the liquid refill system further comprises a refill interface element, the refill interface element comprising a first hollow needle element providing for the liquid outlet and protruding from the refill interface element. In such an embodiment, the case may easily be connected to the refill openings of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device arranged within the primary reception portion.

    [0192] In a preferred embodiment, the refill interface element is configured movable between an insertion position in which the first hollow needle element protrudes into the primary reception portion and a removed position in which the first hollow needle element does not protrude into the primary reception portion. In such an embodiment, the case on the one hand allows to merely carry the electronic smoking device within the case without that the first and second hollow needle element of the refill interface element interact with the electronic smoking device and on the other hand to refill the liquid reservoir of the electronic smoking device when the refill interface element is moved into the insertion position.

    [0193] Preferably, the liquid refill system is entirely arranged within the first or the second wing element, especially within the wing element that comprises the secondary reception portion and/or within the first or the second wing element and the primary reception portion. In such an embodiment, the case is very compact and the manufacturing of the case is eased. Furthermore, the case may easily be repaired and the wing element comprising the liquid refill system may easily be exchanged.

    [0194] In a preferred embodiment, the case further comprises a power source, adapted to supply energy to the pump system and/or to recharge a power source unit of an electronic smoking device that is received by the primary reception portion. An advantage of such a case may be that the user of the case is not forced to manually pump liquid into the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device arranged within the primary reception portion, which may be inconvenient to the user. Preferably, the power source is adapted to supply energy to the actuator.

    [0195] Preferably, the power source is electrically connected to an electrical interface accessible from an outside of the case, the electrical interface being electrically connectable to an external power supply, allowing for the power source of the case to be recharged via the external power supply. In such an embodiment, the power source may easily be rechargeable via the electrical interface.

    [0196] In a preferred embodiment, the case further comprises a display unit and at least one display driver unit configured to operate the display unit. An advantage of such an embodiment may be, that the display unit can be used to display a specific content, a user interface for an interaction with a user or a plurality of icons to the user, wherein the icons may indicate that the case is in a predefined or detected state. Hence, such an embodiment allows for an ameliorated use of the case and of an electronic smoking device arranged therein. Preferably, the display unit comprises a touch display.

    [0197] Preferably, the at least one sensor unit is adapted to detect at least one state of a plurality of predefined states of the case, wherein the case is adapted to indicate at least one of the detected states of the plurality of predefined states of the case via the display unit. In such an embodiment, a user may be provided with a plurality of useful information allowing for an optimized operation and/or use of the case and for an optimized operation and/or use of the electronic smoking device. Preferably, the case comprises a processing unit adapted to indicate at least one of the detected states of the plurality of predefined states of the case via the display unit.

    [0198] In a preferred embodiment, the at least one sensor unit comprises at least one orientation sensor unit, adapted to detect an orientation of the case with respect to a reference line defined by the force of gravity. An advantage of such a case may be that the orientation of the case can be determined, allowing e.g. for an improved refilling of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device received by the primary reception portion.

    [0199] Preferably, the case is further adapted to detect whether the current orientation of the case is within a set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. In such an embodiment, the case is adapted to precisely determine whether a refill of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device received by the primary reception portion can advantageously be initiated and executed or not.

    [0200] In a preferred embodiment, the case is adapted to display a first predefined icon on the display unit when and/or as long as the at least one orientation sensor unit detects that the current orientation of the case is within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. In such an embodiment, it can be indicated to a user of the case that the orientation of the case needs to be adjusted to allow for the initiation and execution of a refill process for the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device received by the primary reception portion.

    [0201] Preferably, the case is adapted to cause the power source to supply energy to the pump system when and/or as long as the at least one orientation sensor unit detects that the current orientation of the case is not within the set of predefined orientations with respect to the reference line defined by the force of gravity. In such an embodiment, the case is adapted to automatically initiate and execute the refilling of the liquid reservoir of an electronic smoking device received by the primary reception portion, as soon as the current orientation of the case is suitable for such a refilling.

    [0202] In a preferred embodiment, the case is adapted to display a second predefined icon on the display unit when and/or as long as energy is supplied to the pump system. In such an embodiment, it is indicated to a user of the case that the pump system is currently operating which will among others prevent the user from attempting to open the case while the aforementioned refill process is executed.

    [0203] Preferably, the case further comprises a power source sensor unit, adapted to detect the state of charge of the power source. In such an embodiment, the user of the case can be warned before the case runs out of energy, e.g. allowing for the user to connect the case to an external power supply via the electrical interface before the power source runs out of energy.

    [0204] In a preferred embodiment, the case is further adapted to display a third predefined icon on the display unit when the current state of charge of the power source drops below a predefined state of charge. In such an embodiment, the user is advantageously warned about the low state of charge of the power source via the display of a third predefined icon displayed on the display unit.

    [0205] In a preferred embodiment, the case further comprises at least one communication unit adapted for a communication with a mobile terminal device via a wireless communication network. In such an embodiment, for example data that is sensed via a sensor unit and/or stored can be processed and/or statistically evaluated using e.g. a mobile device, a computer or a tablet.

    [0206] Preferably, the communication unit is adapted to transmit data of at least one sensor unit of the case to the mobile terminal device via the wireless communication network. Such an embodiment allows for a detailed analysis of a consumers vaping behaviour and further allows for a user to e.g. easily check the status of the case, for example of the state of charge of the power source of the case or the amount of liquid contained within a liquid cartridge received by the secondary reception portion, without that the user has to be near to the case. Especially preferred, the communication unit is adapted to transmit data of the orientation sensor unit and/or of the power source sensor unit and/or of the detection sensor unit of the case to the mobile terminal device via the wireless communication network.

    [0207] In a preferred embodiment, the communication unit is adapted to transmit data of an electronic smoking device received by the primary reception portion to the mobile terminal device. In such an embodiment, also the data of an electronic smoking device arranged within the case and received by the primary reception portion of the case can be transmitted to the mobile terminal device of a user of the case.

    [0208] Preferably, the case and the electronic smoking device together form a refillable smoking system or a smoking system. Preferably, the case represents a refill system for the electronic smoking device. In a furthermore preferred embodiment, the case and the electronic smoking device both represent components of a refillable smoking system.

    [0209] While this invention has been described in connection with what is presently considered to be practical exemplary embodiments, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiments, but, on the contrary, is intended to cover various modifications and equivalent arrangements included within the scope of the appended claims.

    LIST OF REFERENCE SIGNS



    [0210] 
    10
    electronic smoking device
    12
    power supply portion
    14
    atomizer/liquid reservoir portion
    16
    end cap
    18
    power source unit, battery
    20
    light-emitting diode (LED)
    22
    control electronics
    24
    airflow sensor
    26
    atomizer
    28
    heating coil
    30
    wick
    32
    central passage
    33
    outer refill interface portion
    33-1, 33-2
    refill opening
    33-3
    sealing
    34
    liquid reservoir
    35
    ring-element
    36-1
    primary air inhalation port
    36-2
    secondary air inhalation port
    37
    hole
    38
    air inlets
    39
    mouthpiece
    39-1
    small edge side of the mouthpiece
    39-2
    large edge side of the mouthpiece
    40
    electrical interface portion
    41
    electrical terminals
    45
    device communication unit
    50
    device sensor unit
    51
    device power sensor
    52
    device humidity sensor
    52-1
    rigid connector
    53
    device refill sensor
    60
    liquid cartridge
    61
    moveable component of liquid cartridge
    63
    cartridge cap
    64
    rectangular side walls of liquid cartridge
    65
    cartridge outlet
    100
    secondary reception portion
    101
    window within the secondary reception portion
    102
    back window
    103
    reception portion outlet
    104
    open bottom side of the secondary reception portion
    105
    communication unit
    108
    processing unit
    110
    sensor unit
    111
    orientation sensor unit
    112
    power source sensor unit
    113
    detection sensor unit
    120
    display unit
    122
    first predefined icon
    123
    second predefined icon
    124
    third predefined icon
    125
    display driver unit
    130
    power source
    135
    electrical interface
    135-1
    USB-driver component
    150
    pump system
    155
    actuator
    157
    actuator shaft
    158
    actuator element
    158-1
    first gear wheel
    158-2
    second gear wheel
    158-3
    threaded rod
    159
    switching element
    160
    refill interface element
    161
    first hollow needle element
    162
    second hollow needle element
    163
    covering piece of refill interface element
    164
    moveable interaction piece of refill interface element
    170
    liquid outlet
    175
    electrical contacts
    179
    liquid channelling system
    180
    liquid inlet
    181
    air outlet
    184
    air channelling system
    186
    air suction reservoir
    186-1
    plunger component
    186-2
    front cap portion
    186-3
    back end plug
    190
    liquid refill system
    200
    first wing element
    240
    inner surface of first wing element
    300
    second wing element
    340
    inner surface of second wing element
    400
    primary reception portion
    410
    lower distal end of the primary reception portion
    412
    hinge elements
    413
    guide rail
    414
    corresponding component
    415
    protrusions
    420
    upper distal end of the primary reception portion
    440
    surface of the primary reception portion
    500
    case
    501
    front side wall
    502
    back side wall
    503
    edge side wall
    503-1
    smaller edge side wall
    503-2
    larger edge side wall
    504
    rounded edges
    600
    mobile terminal device
    DCL
    device centre line
    H
    height
    Fg
    force of gravity
    L
    optimal refill centre line
    L', L"
    centre line
    C
    imaginary refill cone
    S
    imaginary sphere
    R1
    first result of the operation method
    R2
    second result of the operation method
    R3
    third result of the operation method
    R4
    fourth result of the operation method
    S1
    first step of the operation method
    S2
    second step of the operation method
    S3
    third step of the operation method
    S4
    fourth step of the operation method
    S5
    fifth step of the operation method



    Claims

    1. A case (500) for an electronic smoking device (10), the case (500) comprising:

    - a primary reception portion (400), adapted to receive an electronic smoking device (10),

    - a first and a second wing element (200, 300), each comprising a substantially closed compartment,

    wherein the wing elements (200, 300) are adapted to fix an electronic smoking device (10) arranged within the primary reception portion (400) to the case (500), characterized in that the wing elements (200, 300) are each hingedly connected to the primary reception portion (400) and pivotable with respect to the primary reception portion (400).
     
    2. The case (500) of claim 1, further comprising at least one communication unit (105) and electrical contacts (175) for the electrical connection to the electrical interface portion (40) of the electronic smoking device (10), wherein the at least one communication unit (105) of the case (500) is further adapted to receive data from a device communication unit (45) of the electronic smoking device (10).
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Gehäuse (500) für eine elektronische Rauchvorrichtung (10), wobei das Gehäuse (500) Folgendes umfasst:

    - einen primären Aufnahmeabschnitt (400), der dazu angepasst ist, eine elektronische Rauchvorrichtung (10) aufzunehmen,

    - ein erstes und ein zweites Flügelelement (200, 300), die jeweils ein im Wesentlichen geschlossenes Fach umfassen,

    wobei die Flügelelemente (200, 300) dazu angepasst sind, eine innerhalb des primären Aufnahmeabschnitts (400) angeordnete elektronische Rauchvorrichtung (10) an dem Gehäuse (500) zu fixieren, dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass die Flügelelemente (200, 300) jeweils gelenkig mit dem primären Aufnahmeabschnitt (400) verbunden und in Bezug auf den primären Aufnahmeabschnitt (400) schwenkbar sind.
     
    2. Gehäuse (500) nach Anspruch 1, das ferner mindestens eine Kommunikationseinheit (105) und elektrische Kontakte (175) für die elektrische Verbindung mit dem elektrischen Schnittstellenabschnitt (40) der elektronischen Rauchvorrichtung (10) umfasst,
    wobei die mindestens eine Kommunikationseinheit (105) des Gehäuses (500) ferner dazu angepasst ist, Daten von einer Vorrichtungskommunikationseinheit (45) der elektronischen Rauchvorrichtung (10) zu empfangen.
     


    Revendications

    1. Boîtier (500) pour un dispositif de cigarette électronique (10), le boîtier (500) comprenant :

    - une première partie de réception (400), conçue pour accueillir un dispositif de cigarette électronique (10),

    - des premier et deuxième éléments d'aile (200, 300), chacun comprenant un compartiment essentiellement fermé,

    les éléments d'aile (200, 300) étant conçus pour fixer au boîtier (500) un dispositif de cigarette électronique (10) disposé dans la première partie de réception (400), caractérisé en ce que les éléments d'aile (200, 300) sont tous les deux reliés de façon articulée à la première partie de réception (400) et peuvent pivoter par rapport à la première partie de réception (400).
     
    2. Boîtier (500) selon la revendication 1, comprenant en outre au moins une unité de communication (105) et des contacts électriques (175) pour la connexion électrique avec la partie d'interface électrique (40) du dispositif de cigarette électronique (10),
    l'au moins une unité de communication (105) du boîtier (500) étant en outre conçue pour recevoir des données d'une unité de communication de dispositif (45) du dispositif de cigarette électronique (10).
     




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    Cited references

    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description