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interesting post. saw that. intriguing, but the little physicist in my head makes me dubious - Newton's 3rd law tells us that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, so for the airbag to expand outwards at high speed and force, it has to apply that same force inwards, i.e., against your body. I guess the design and shape of the bags can be done in a way so as to limit that inwards force, but I wonder...

your post got me surfing for more info, and here's a really nice overview of the Honda system installed in the Goldwings, once you get past the first minute or so of promo-bumpf. nobody else in the motorcycle industry has anywhere near the amount of related expertise (and money) to bring them anywhere close to this level of investigation and development. BMW has the potential to do similar work, because much of the underpinnings lies in auto-based research.

https://hondanews.com/powersports/channels/gold-wing/videos/goldwing-airbag-system

note that the Goldwing airbags got caught up in the Takata recall issue, along with about 40 million other vehicles.
 

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here's something else interesting I came across: a detailed look at the injuries and deaths caused by airbags. this is a long article, but very informed and 'scholarly'. the big take-aways for me were two-fold, and associated: according to this article, seatbelt use in the UK and Europe is vastly higher than here in North America (which I found surprising, and disappointing), so airbag designs in the UK and Europe are less 'dramatic' and violently explosive. that results in fewer air-bag-caused injuries and deaths, without loss of overall protection. seems a better 'driving culture' system to me... not that there's much likelihood of changing the behaviour of non-seat-belt-using drivers at this point, after so many years of both carrot and stick (education and enforcement).

https://emj.bmj.com/content/19/6/490


btw, the 'seat belt use' issue got me digging more, and the above article would appear to be incorrect in its assertion that seat belt use in North America is lower than in Europe. here's the data from the Center for Disease Control:

https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/seatbelts/seatbelt_map.html

Very few states run under 80% - many are over 90%.

It seems that usage is also very high in Canada, but you can't convince everyone:

"Transport Canada reports that while 93 per cent of Canadians buckle up, the seven per cent who don’t account for almost 40 per cent of fatalities in vehicle collisions."
 

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^^ given that the 1st article you posted is from 2002 .. and the latter is a more recent from 2012 I would say initial reports are based on outdated data.

lots of newer, well equipped cars on the road in 2012 i bet.. sure older vehicles came with 'seatbelts' but those inhabiting
them were from a different generation where driving without seatbelts was much more prevalent. Much along the same lines,
how many "baby in car" stickers did you see prior to 1999? :coffee
 

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Airbags for cars are not a mature technology so there's still plenty of work to be done. Right now it's just one-size-fits-all. The day will come when sensors identify your height and position in a carseat to determine the best direction and velocity to deploy bags.
The Goldwing tech is cool though. Wish I had that about 8 years ago.
 

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Airbags for cars are not a mature technology so there's still plenty of work to be done. Right now it's just one-size-fits-all. The day will come when sensors identify your height and position in a carseat to determine the best direction and velocity to deploy bags.
yes sir. correct :thumbup
 

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Airbags for cars are not a mature technology so there's still plenty of work to be done. Right now it's just one-size-fits-all. The day will come when sensors identify your height and position in a carseat to determine the best direction and velocity to deploy bags.
...yup!
 

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Airbags for cars are not a mature technology so there's still plenty of work to be done. Right now it's just one-size-fits-all. The day will come when sensors identify your height and position in a carseat to determine the best direction and velocity to deploy bags.
Advanced Frontal Airbags that do some or all of those things have been around since 2004.

This motorcycle airbag... leaves a lot of questions let's say. I'm not surprised they don't have many backers. Seat comes with you? Weird. Innovative, but weird. **
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
your post got me surfing for more info, and here's a really nice overview of the Honda system installed in the Goldwings, once you get past the first minute or so of promo-bumpf. nobody else in the motorcycle industry has anywhere near the amount of related expertise (and money) to bring them anywhere close to this level of investigation and development. BMW has the potential to do similar work, because much of the underpinnings lies in auto-based research.

https://hondanews.com/powersports/channels/gold-wing/videos/goldwing-airbag-system
Necessity is said to be the mother of invention. In the animated collisions the riders neck seems to line up perfectly with the top of the Goldwing's windscreen. Yikes
 

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Good to know. I was aware of the dainese system but not the alpinestars system. While the snow is on the ground, more research to be done.
 

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*** good point. not to mention the Dianese and Alpinestars systems:

https://www.dainese.com/fr/en/corporate/d-air/system/#

https://www.alpinestars.com/tech-air

I presume it's way less costly ( altho still very expensive) to develop and test systems for the rider, than systems for a vehicle... is this the future?
And they've been working on those systems for a long time... over 15 years for Dianese I think. The algorithm to determine when you're actually crashing and not just moving around the bike must be crazy.

I thought they were just race systems, good to see they have road versions as well.

But none of the suit systems seem to do much about the thing you run into, while the goldwing system does nothing for you after you've left the bike. Kind of either/or at this point, I have no doubt there will be further advancements.*
 

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And they've been working on those systems for a long time... over 15 years for Dianese I think. The algorithm to determine when you're actually crashing and not just moving around the bike must be crazy.

I thought they were just race systems, good to see they have road versions as well.

But none of the suit systems seem to do much about the thing you run into, while the goldwing system does nothing for you after you've left the bike. Kind of either/or at this point, I have no doubt there will be further advancements.*
Alpinestars has an off road version coming out next year. They've been working on it for several years. When they first started testing, they used the road version, and just monitored when road tuned triggered events would happen. I believe they were getting 27 triggered events per supercross test lap. So needless to say they have a lot of data.

Their road labs have monitored over 700 triggered events, and there wasn't a single event where it didn't go off and should have, or did go off when shouldn't have.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
And they've been working on those systems for a long time... over 15 years for Dianese I think. The algorithm to determine when you're actually crashing and not just moving around the bike must be crazy.

I thought they were just race systems, good to see they have road versions as well.

But none of the suit systems seem to do much about the thing you run into, while the goldwing system does nothing for you after you've left the bike. Kind of either/or at this point, I have no doubt there will be further advancements.*
This has turned into an interesting thread, and so good to see this technology being developed for rider safety on and off the road.

Pricey. But if an airbag system could reduce the blunt force trauma from hitting a deer, and offer some protection during the tumble - it's worth every penny.
 
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