• Sep 26, 2005

Ford has released details on the Jaguar XK's innovative pedestrian safety feature with the cumbersome name - the Pyrotechnic Pedestrian Deployable Bonnet System.
The system uses explosive charges to raise the hood a few inches, creating more space between the pedestrian and the engine and allowing the hood a greater range of deformation on impact. The system is activated by smart sensors in the bumper, and full deployment of the 40-pound hood takes only 30 milliseconds. An animation of the system in action is here.

The system is a response to European safety regulations, and allows Jaguar to maintain a low silhouette for the XK while still providing the required impact protection for pedestrians.

Full press release after the jump…

THE ALL-NEW JAGUAR XK PREMIERES WORLD - FIRST DEPLOYABLE BONNET SYSTEM


In an era of safety conscious motoring, Jaguar has managed to combine beautiful, fast sports car design with the latest pedestrian impact technology to create a world first with the all-new XK. Today at the Frankfurt motorshow Jaguar engineers premiered the Pyrotechnic Pedestrian Deployable Bonnet System (PDBS) a state-of-the-art advanced safety feature.

Within the ?blink of an eye? In the unfortunate event of a pedestrian impact, the deployable bonnet on the new XK automatically ?pops? up a few inches, to create a cushioning effect between the engine and the bonnet. This helps to isolate the pedestrian from hard points in the engine compartment - and takes place in less than a tenth of the time it takes to blink an eye.

Jaguar is one of the first manufacturers to meet Phase One of new European safety legislation using an active deployable bonnet system. The new standards are designed to help mitigate the severity of injuries to pedestrians in the event of a collision with a car.

Legislation in the European market requires manufacturers to commit to a two-phase introduction of a range of active and passive safety improvements on all new cars to improve the protection of pedestrians in case of accident.

?The Jaguar design team embraced the idea of using a deployable bonnet when it was first considered during early concept discussions on the new XK. This clever feature saves between 50 and 65mm in height off the bonnet surface and a similar amount off the roofline, allowing the design team to maintain a very low, sleek Jaguar sports car profile on the new XK.? said Ian Callum, Jaguar Cars Design Director.

The Jaguar Pyrotechnic Pedestrian Deployable Bonnet provides an innovative solution to these legislative requirements whilst ensuring that the sleek lines that customers expect from Jaguar sports cars can be retained. The active system fitted to the all-new XK is complemented by a passive bumper system, the design of which helps to mitigate leg injury through the use of crushable foam and plastic covering. An advanced sensing system is mounted in the front bumper to help discriminate between a pedestrian collision and any other possible front-end collisions. The speed of the sensing time in the system is around one tenth of the time it takes to blink an eye.

Phil Hodgkinson Jaguar Programmes Director said: ?I take technology development at our product development centres very seriously and I am proud to be working with Jaguar engineers that can deliver this kind of safety system, which we believe to be a world-first. The fact that it also allows us to stay true to Ian Callum?s core Jaguar design values is equally satisfying.?

The complex system has been extensively researched across wide-ranging scenarios, using 120 man-years and thousands of computer simulations, as well as tested in practice at Jaguar?s Engineering Centre at Whitley in Coventry, England. While all pedestrian impact research has been carried out using virtual tools, analysis of previous ?real world? incidents has played an important part in the development process.

One of the impressive points about the new XK?s pyrotechnic deployable bonnet system is that it can lift the bonnet (which weighs 18kg) in around 30 milliseconds, which requires an acceleration rate of about 50 times the force of gravity (50g).

Physical research carried out by the Jaguar development team has included investigation of various impacts including inanimate objects such as motorway cones. This is a vital part of the process to allow the system to differentiate a person from other impacts that can be experienced in day-to-day driving.

The Jaguar pyrotechnic pedestrian deployable bonnet system normally operates at vehicle speeds where it provides the most benefit and is automatically disabled outside of this speed range. The system is completely separate from any other crash protection system on the vehicle, including airbags.

?The Pyrotechnic Pedestrian Deployable Bonnet in the all-new XK is a leading safety technology that goes hand in hand with an advanced Jaguar sports car, sitting alongside a beautifully crafted luxury interior, aluminium technology and scintillating, dynamic performance.? said Russ Varney, Chief Program Engineer for the XK series.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 9 Comments
      • 9 Years Ago
      Not a bad start, but what it needs to do is use the hood to flip the pedestrian over the car so you can keep going. Pedestrian collisions wreak havoc with front-end alignment.
      • 9 Years Ago
      It seems like Ian Callum isnt too happy about the hood of this car. "Jaguar design chief Ian Callum blames government regulations for preventing him from designing the Jaguar XK he wanted. In an interview with Automotive News, Callum pointed to new pedestrian safety rules in the U.S. and Europe that lead to a bulbous hood and taller greenhouse. A 70-millimeter gap is required between the hood’s sheet metal and the topmost piece of the engine, to cushion pedestrian impacts." pulled this from http://www.leftlanenews.com/?p=24 ...... This regulation stuff is going way too far! The governemnt is clearly out of touch with drivers.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Joking aside, I have to thank the heavens that Jaguar engineers figured out a way to comply with the new european safety standards without wreaking havok with styling. One of the car mags had an article that mocked up what current cars would look like with the new hood clearance mandates that this law passes. The results were not pretty.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Everything is changing. Check this out http://www.lacksenterprises.com/Auto_Trim/LacksEnterprisesFlexLamp2.wmv
      • 9 Years Ago
      Everything is changing. Check this out http://www.lacksenterprises.com/Auto_Trim/LacksEnterprisesFlexLamp2.wmv
      • 9 Years Ago
      Are these European regulations really necessary? Are there really that many pedestrian accidents? What ever happened to looking both ways before crossing the street. Next they will require that pedestrians themselves wear an airbag device that would cushion the impact of a car. Wait, strike that ..... I don't want the regulators to get any ideas.
      • 9 Years Ago
      aww man... they're gonna have to revise the point system for pedestrian take-downs. if you drive this car, you shouldn't get the full 50 points for creaming an adult male :p
      • 9 Years Ago
      Future headlines: "Pyrotechnic Pedestrian Deployable Bonnet System Launches J-Walker"
      • 9 Years Ago
      Sounds like thie new Jag is a sure fire hit!!