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Old 1st October 2013, 12:51   #1
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Default TRW plans external, side airbags

Airbags inside of automobiles are nothing new, and have saved thousands of lives worldwide since being put into widespread use. Last year Volvo developed and offered the world's first pedestrian airbag. The Volvo V40 hatch has sensors in the front bumper that detect when a pedestrian has been hit.

This year its the development of external airbags which could reduce the damage from a collision. TRW Automotive has developed plans for airbags to deploy from the sill beneath the side doors of vehicles. Using radar and camera systems the airbags will deploy a fraction of a second before impact, helping to reduce injuries to the occupants of cars. It is still many years away till we see it in cars.

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External airbags that pop up on the side of cars are the latest safety innovations being developed for the motoring industry.
The bags will deploy from the sill beneath doors in 20-30 milliseconds and protect the side of the vehicle from impact.
Designers at TRW Automotive are now working on radar and camera systems to detect the precise moment the airbag needs to be triggered.
Source: DAILYMAIL
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Old 1st October 2013, 14:28   #2
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Default re: TRW plans external, side airbags

I may be playing the devil's advocate here but what if the car coming towards you stops just mm's away from the car? Given the scenario the car would still deploy the airbag but the whole exercise is futile since the impact was avoided at the very last millisecond.

Also since this is for side impacts, what about cases where the car is coming at an angle? Lastly will the system be as effective and efficient in the dark? Also will it be able to distinguish between a car and say an animal?

Ooops, too many questions but that is what immediately came to my mind when I read the article.
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Old 1st October 2013, 14:54   #3
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Default re: TRW plans external, side airbags

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Originally Posted by Maverick1977 View Post
I may be playing the devil's advocate here but what if the car coming towards you stops just mm's away from the car? Given the scenario the car would still deploy the airbag but the whole exercise is futile since the impact was avoided at the very last millisecond.

Also since this is for side impacts, what about cases where the car is coming at an angle? Lastly will the system be as effective and efficient in the dark? Also will it be able to distinguish between a car and say an animal?

Ooops, too many questions but that is what immediately came to my mind when I read the article.
As originally stated, it is still under development and a few years away. Also, I guess the system will have crash sensors working in tandem with the camera and radar systems and not just the latter. But you have valid points nonetheless.
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Old 1st October 2013, 17:09   #4
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Default re: TRW plans external, side airbags

Hmmm... this sounds a bit extreme to me!

An airbag makes sense to slow down a delicate head, whilst its attached to a body, thats being held back by a seat-belt.

An airbag does not make sense trying to slow down a 2 tonne car that's about to T-bone you!

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Old 1st October 2013, 20:20   #5
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Default Re: TRW plans external, side airbags

Ha ha - imagine this in India, with our traffic. It'll be deploying every time a biker tries to squeeze in through the 10 centimetre gap between cars, and will send him flying.

Come to think of it, that's not such a bad outcome...
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