TRW unveils ‘bag in roof’ airbag system

Article by Christian A., on May 19, 2011

A roof airbag product is now being offered by TRW Automotive Holding Corp. that provides more room for interior styling than the regular instrument panel airbags.

The passenger-side airbag (typically found in the instrument panel) won’t be required anymore since the “bag in roof” airbag system deploys one airbag from the roof. This protects both driver and passenger. In a statement, TRW said that installing this system will increase space and considerably reduce dashboard production costs.

Dirk Schultz, engineering director for TRW's Inflatable Restraint Systems, said that occupant safety systems are now “increasingly versatile.” He added that with the focus on avoiding road deaths and injuries, the company has decided to find new ways to protect the occupants even further.

This is why TRW is studying the design and configuration of airbags. TRW has been working on the “bag in roof” project for many years. TRW said that for the last two years, it has collaborated with an unidentified major European automaker on this new technology as part of their production contract.

According to Steven Peterson, director of engineering systems for TRW, the company anticipates that the “bag in roof” system will be introduced in 2014 model-year vehicles. Production will probably be in Germany or Poland.

Renowned as one of the most significant automobile producers on earth, TRW launches its latest product -- the “Bag in Roof” Air Bag System. It is the result of efforts made from several years of collaboration with another world famous vehicle manufacturer in the European continent. While providing safety for both the driver and the passenger, this system frees up room for the occupants. In addition, it incurs low production cost which ensures the affordability of this useful product.

This Air Bag System has a unique, modern and smart structure. Not only that, it was manufactured with exclusive features such as a cushion and gas generator. During an impact, gas is delivered to the cushion. It has a simple set-up, making the system more reliable and easy to use. In addition, the system is compatible with a wide range of automobile designs. Since the parts it uses are found in all applications, there’s every chance that this system can be standardized. After years in the pre-development phase and the subsequent cooperation with a big European automaker, a major production contract is now in effect.

About TRW

Based in Livonia, Michigan, USA, TRW is classified as one of the most outstanding vehicle producers in the globe, known for its efficiency in providing automobile services and delivering the best value products to their customers. Among its products are: integrated vehicle control and driver assist systems, braking systems, steering systems, suspension systems, occupant safety systems (seat belts and airbags), electronics, engine components, fastening systems and aftermarket replacement parts and services. TRW has estimated sales of $14.4 billion during 2010. Operating across 26 countries and empowering more than 60,000 employees, TRW continues to build its reputation as one of the best automotive producers worldwide.

Press Release

TRW Introduces Innovative Roof Airbag Technology

TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. (NYSE: TRW) has today unveiled its new 'bag in roof' airbag system which replaces passenger airbags typically mounted in the instrument panel. The new airbag can help to mitigate passenger injuries and can allow for improved interior design aesthetics, ergonomics and functionality while saving space in the instrument panel.

Dirk Schultz, engineering director for TRW's Inflatable Restraint Systems commented: "Occupant safety systems are becoming increasingly versatile. With the increasing focus on reducing road fatalities, we need to develop new ways to enhance the protection of occupants – one area of focus is the design and configuration of airbags. TRW's new roof airbag system is a unique development and studies have shown that such a technology provides enhanced styling flexibility for future vehicle interiors in combination with excellent restraint performance."

In addition, this new design concept enhances development efficiency: by eliminating the need to package a passenger airbag in the instrument panel, TRW's bag in roof design can significantly reduce the development costs of the dashboard as there is no need to develop a specific 'door' that opens with the airbag deployment. It is also functionally compatible with a wide range of vehicle architectures.

The airbag unit comprises a cushion and a gas generator which supplies the gas to the cushion in the event of an impact. The product offers easy assembly with opportunities for standardization as some of the components are common to all applications.

TRW has undertaken pre-development work for the bag in roof technology for several years, and over the previous two years in close collaboration with a major European vehicle manufacturer. This has resulted in the award of a significant production contract with the vehicle manufacturer.

About TRW

With 2010 sales of $14.4 billion, TRW Automotive ranks among the world's leading automotive suppliers. Headquartered in Livonia, Michigan, USA, the Company, through its subsidiaries, operates in 26 countries and employs over 60,000 people worldwide. TRW Automotive products include integrated vehicle control and driver assist systems, braking systems, steering systems, suspension systems, occupant safety systems (seat belts and airbags), electronics, engine components, fastening systems and aftermarket replacement parts and services. All references to "TRW Automotive", "TRW" or the "Company" in this press release refer to TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. and its subsidiaries, unless otherwise indicated.

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