Search the Archives           Subscribe           About this News Service           Reader Comments

Archived updates for Friday, September 02, 2005

TGIF for the Heroes of Engineering

The heroes of engineering are featured in "The 20th Century through the Comics," published by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers in honor of their 125th anniversary. This month's comic features Allen K. Breed, inventor of the automotive air bag inflator disclosed in U.S. Patent No. 4,711,466:

His apparatus included a sensor 50 mounted on a toroidal-shaped pressure vessel 30. The sensor contains firing pins 53 that are aligned to detonate stab primers 54 and activate percussion primers 55. When the vehicle decelerates, the sensor initiates gas generation in the vessel which is isolated from the sensor. This configuration allows the sensitive pyrotechnics in the sensor to be kept separate from the gas generator until they are installed in the automobile. It therefore simplifies the manufacturing, handling, and shipping of the gas generator and greatly increases the safety of the system before it is installed in the vehicle.

Click here for more on air bag safety from the U.S. National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

Thank Goodness It's Friday,

--Bill Heinze

    (0)comment(s)     translate     More Updates     Send