Safety Vent Airbag
2007 - PACE Award Winner
What: Safety Vent Airbag
Although airbags save thousands of lives every year, they can be dangerous to children, small females, and out of-position passenger seat occupants, particularly when too close to a deploying airbag. Autoliv's customers had expressed concern with the cost and reliability of the standard practice of using occupant and weight sensors to detect out-of-position children. They wanted to remove weight sensors and still be able to meet the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard, FMVSS 208.
Autoliv convened a team of engineers and the Safety-Vent passenger airbag resulted. This airbag incorporates large safety vents which allow gas to be dumped from the inflating airbag when an out-of-position occupant is encountered by the bag. In this case, the airbag deploys relatively slowly, a "low-risk deployment." Conversely, if an occupant is sitting in a normal position, a safe distance from an inflating airbag, straps inside the airbag pull on drawstrings around the vents to close the openings. The full amount of inflation gas is allowed into the airbag, with no venting. The risk of injuring a child or small adult or out-of-position passenger due to full pressue deployment of an airbag is thus drastically reduced.
Autoliv's patented Safety-Vent Airbag is a simple but effective device that automatically and naturally controls the inflating gas during a passenger-side airbag's deployment. This is a revolutionary and cost-effective solution. Sensors and electronics which are expensive and require complex installation are no longer needed.
The Autoliv's Safety-Vent airbag is in use on five DaimlerChrysler platforms launched in 2006, the Grand Cherokee, Commander, Patriot, Sebring Coupe and Avenger. It is in queue for Pacifica and is forecast for 19 passenger platforms over multiple customers in the CY 2006 - 2009.