Think of what's required for an airbag to safely and effectively do its job. The device must sense a crash, determine whether it's serious enough to require airbag deployment, and fully inflate the bag—all in time to catch your head and safely cushion it, while the car is still crashing.
Accomplishing all of this in a fraction of a second takes an immense amount of explosive power. And watching it unfold in slow motion gives perspective on just how much punch an airbag can pack.
got a bunch of salvaged automotive airbags together to see what it looks like when they detonate. Giaco and his buddy sort of went about this like idiots, detonating multiple airbags in a small, cluttered space with no real attention paid to where the flying pieces would go. Their airbag-powered cannon nearly destroyed some tools that were packed in a burly metal case. These guys clearly didn't know what they were getting into.
But while we can find plenty to criticize with their methods, their results are nothing short of eye-popping. Watching an airbag inflator detonate in slow-motion makes you appreciate just how powerful this device needs to be in order to keep you safe.
To some, this video might be scary. We're still not out of the woods regarding the Takata airbag disaster, where improperly engineered inflators exploded too forcefully, shooting shrapnel into the passenger compartments of affected cars. , and efforts to recall and replace the affected units are ongoing—made difficult by the fact that Takata supplied so many airbags to so many automakers.
I think of it the opposite way. I like knowing the power of an airbag. A properly engineered, safely-manufactured airbag has to perform instantaneously in a crash. That takes explosive power. Let's not forget that have mostly stemmed from airbags not deploying in a crash.
Dependable, properly-manufactured airbags have saved thousands of lives since they were made mandatory in most automotive markets. That takes power. Here's how much.