TRW Automotive Holdings subsidiary TRW Automotive US has developed a scalable airbag control unit (ACU) designed for the growing low-cost vehicle markets.

The ‘intelligent solution’ allows the ACU to be adapted within a platform to offer two options – standard and enhanced – for models sold within emerging territories and for those exported to developed markets.

TRW Electronics vice president Ed Carpenter said: “This scalable ACU allows cost-driven manufacturers to equip their vehicles with safety electronics while maintaining their competitiveness, and offers emerging safety electronics markets the opportunity to fit their vehicles with advanced safety equipment.

“This flexibility is essential for OEMs looking for a single solution to satisfy both the emerging and export markets.”

The standard system is configured for cost effective applications of one to four squibs with no satellite interface, but provides the flexibility to be used in an enhanced system, designed to handle additional capability requirements of up to eight squibs and four satellite interfaces. The standard and enhanced options can be offered within the same base unit.

TRW’s standard ACU supports front and side crash detection with the additional option of rear crash detection and can support the interface of up to four satellite sensor modules or can be configured for no satellite interface.

The metal housing design of the standard ACU meets cost, packaging and reliability requirements while maintaining the mechanical performance necessary for reliable crash sensing.

TRW claims to lead in the performance/price ratio with this new airbag controller, fulfilling the need for a cost effective ACU for both value oriented manufacturers and for emerging crash sensor markets such as Brazil, Russia, India and China.