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Considerations in designing a chemical automotive airbag system

Airbags play a crucial role in automobiles. They protect passengers from injuries. An airbag is an inflatable soft sheath that bulges out incase of a collision. The airbag is part of air cushion restraint system. Airbags supplement protection given by seatbelts. A characteristic airbag system comprises car sensors, an airbag unit that has an inflator or gas generator, crash sensors with diagnostic monitoring unit, an indicator lamp and a steering wheel connecting coil.

These components are connected by a wiring system that is powered by a battery. In case of an anterior collision, the vehicle decelerates suddenly and the sensor sends a signal to an igniter which heats up and goes through the propellant unit which causes the sodium azide to react and produce a nitrogen gas that fills the air bag. There are many considerations to be taken care of when designing an airbag system. The quality control feature of airbag design is importantly obvious because many lives are dependent on the safety feature.

This applies to the inflator static and dynamic tests and even the propellant tests. Before the propellant is inserted in the inflator, it is supposed to be subjected to ballistic testing to foretell its behavior. The airbag is also examined for seam and fabric imperfections. Chemical inflators must characteristically be harmonized to the airbag they are planned to inflate, with each swell in size of bag needing a bigger inflator.

Now that the effectiveness of the airbag relies on the ability of the sensors to detect how severer is the collision to trigger deployment, the system has to be designed in particular way an automobile behaves incase of a crash. More advanced sensors are ideal to tailor deployment of the airbag in given conditions. In this case the size and weight of the passenger is detected The type of propellant used is also an issue in this case. Some propellants like sodium azide are poisonous when in its unused form.

Sodium azide reacts with heavy metals to form volatile explosives. So the system should be designed in such a way that the use of sodium azide is void. A hybrid inflator that utilizes a blend of heat from the propellant and pressurized argon can be ideal since it is less expensive and large volume of gas is produced. The inflator components used are supposed to be inspected. They include: an igniter, metal canister and the filter assembly.

The pressure in the air bag, and hence the amount of NaN3 required for the airbag to be quickly filled adequately to protect us in a crash, can be determined using the kinetic theory of gases and the ideal-gas laws. This helps us understand how at the molecular level the gas is responsible for the pressure in the airbag. Newtonian laws helps us compute the force and hence the pressure needed to move the front of the air bag forward in the process of inflation as also how the airbag offers protection by minimizing the force acting on the body Conclusion

When it comes to airbag technology, the original environmentally friendly igniter compound, having only CHNO can substitute zinc-based or heavy metal igniters in modern airbags. An innovative class of oxidizers like the oxy amine-based oxidizers and dinitramide salts can boost performance of monopropellant solid formulations in airbag production. References 1. http://machinedesign. com/ContentItem/70931/Simulationdeflatesairbagdesigntime. aspx 2. www. chemistry. wustl. edu/~edudev/LabTutorials/Airbags/airbags. html 3. http://www. bookrags. com/research/airbag-automobile-woi/ . .

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