TRW announces new headliner-mounted front airbag system
Seeking to find a more efficient alternative to today's conventional dash-mounted front airbags, TRW Automotive Holdings Corporation has just unveiled its new "bag in roof" system. In development for several years, TRW says this headliner-mounted alternative can help mitigate passenger injuries while allowing for improvements in interior design aesthetics, ergonomics and functionality. By eliminating the need for an in-dash inflatable restraint on the passenger side, it also will help lower overall engineering costs and open up more concealed -- and very coveted -- real estate that will simplify packaging a wide range of future in-car electronic systems.
In presenting this new bag-in-roof solution, Dirk Schultz, engineering director for TRW's Inflatable Restraint Systems called it a unique development and noted "studies have shown that such a technology provides enhanced styling flexibility for future vehicle interiors in combination with excellent restraint performance."
Equally critical, TRW's bag-in-roof design, which consists of a specially shaped airbag and related gas generator unit, is fully compatible with a wide range of existing vehicle architectures, can be easily integrated into the production line process and offers extensive standardization potential that will further help reduce implementation costs. While not ready to offer specifics on its first use in a production model, TRW did confirm that it has been working with a major European vehicle manufacturer for the past two years and currently has "a significant production contract" with the same automaker.