The present invention relates to a hose for introduction
and distribution of inflator gas used for an air bag apparatus against the side
collision which protects the persons in the car upon crash from the side of the
car. More particularly, it relates to a hose for introduction and distribution of
inflator gas which is optimum for controlling the inflator gas flow where the hose
has a distribution hole and is coated at least at one side.
In driver's seat and assistant driver's seat, there are
installed air bag apparatuses which expand the air bag to constrain the drivers
upon collision of the car. The air bag apparatus is composed of an inflator which
is a device for generation of gas and, an air bag which expands by the inflator
gas and an air bag case receiving them.
In recent years, there has been a big demand for installment
of an air bag apparatus for side collision called a curtain air bag coping with
the side collision in addition to the front collision at the driver's seat and the
assistant driver' s seat. With regard to the air bag for side collision, a thing
being folded and received in a center pillar and front pillar where inflator gas
is introduced from the rear part has been considered. Although it is necessary that
the air bag for side collision is instantly developed in a planar form between the
door and the passenger, there is apt to happen a problem that unusual pressure is
applied at the part where inflator gas is introduced resulting in burst. In order
to resist the local pressure, it is necessary to use thick fiber or highly strong
fiber such as Kevlar to reinforce the strength of the bag as a whole. When the fiber
is made thick, it becomes bulky and causes a problem in its receiving property whereby
that is less practical. When a highly strong fiber is used, the cost becomes high
causing a problem. It has been investigated that, by paying attention to distribution
of inflator gas, metal tube or planar sheet is sewed to make a cylindrical shape
as a distribution hose. However, when metal tube is used, although the strength
is satisfactory, the tube lacks in softness and flexibility and there is a problem
in receiving it. In addition, since metal has a good heat transfer and melts the
air bag near the inflator, there is a problem of its use as an air bag for side
collision which is demanded to keep the pressure for relatively long time. On the
other hand, in the case where planar sheet is sewed to make a cylindrical shape,
there causes breakage from the sewed area or breakage by the heat of inflator from
near the inlet of the inflator whereby no satisfactory product has been available.
It is the current state that, in the above-mentioned conventional
air bags for side collision, there is available no hose for gas distribution of
air bags for side collision where breakage near the inlet of inflator is prevented,
receiving property is good and cost is advantageous.
DE-A-198 59 539
discloses a hose for introduction and distribution of inflator gas, wherein
the hose is placed in an air bag apparatus for side collision and distributes the
inflator gas upon operation of the air bag.
The present invention has been created in view of the above-mentioned
current state in the prior art as such and its object is to provide a hose for introduction
and distribution of inflator gas being able to be used for an air bag apparatus
for side collision where the receiving property of the air bag for side collision
is improved, the receiving space is reduced, breakage near the inlet of inflator
is prevented and the cost is advantageous.
The present invention is a hose for introduction and distribution
of inflator gas which is characterized in that the hose is placed in an air bag
apparatus for side collision and distributes the inflator gas upon operation of
the air bag, that outside surface and/or inside surface of the hose are/is coated
with rubber or synthetic resin and that the hose has a distribution hole.
Preferred embodiments of the hose of the present invention
will be apparent from the dependent claims.
As to the fiber constituting the hose of the present invention
and the air bag which is connected to the hose, there may be used polyamide fiber,
polyester fiber, etc. although the present invention is not limited thereto. Strength
of the yarn is not less than 6 g/dtex, preferably not less than 7 g/dtex or, more
preferably, not less than 7.5 g/dtex.
The hose of the present invention can be prepared using
a cylindrical weaving machine used for weaving a fire hose and the like. When a
cylindrical weaving machine is used, there is no necessity of conducting a process
for making a cylinder whereby the processing cost such as sewing can be reduced.
In addition, it is not necessary to take the breakage from the sewed part into consideration
and the reliability is increased.
It is necessary that at least one side of the hose of the
present invention is coated with rubber or with synthetic resin. Examples of the
rubber to be coated are neoprene rubber, ethylene propylene diene rubber and silicone
rubber. Examples of the silicone rubber are thermosetting addition polymerization
silicone rubber and RTV silicone rubber of a two-liquid type although they are non-limitative.
The silicone rubber may use silane coupling agent of an amino type, epoxy-modified
silane coupling agent, silane coupling agent of a vinyl type, silicone coupling
agent of a chlorine type, etc. for improving the adhesive property. As a result
of improving the adhesive property, it is possible to increase the slip-off resistance.
With regard to the synthetic resin, there may be used polyester, polyamide, elastomer
of a polyester type, elastomer of a polyamide type, elastomer of a polyurethane
type, etc. although they are non-limitative.
The hose of the present invention may have a distribution
hole in any shape or any size and it is preferred that the distribution hole is
substantially square or rectangular where each side is located substantially parallel
to or in a right angle to warp or woof constituting the hose. Distribution hole
in a circular shape is inferior to that in a square or rectangular shape in terms
of the preference. That is because, when the shape of the distribution hole is circular,
easily unraveled parts are formed at the area where ends of warp and woof are crossed,
resistance to gas flow at that area upon development of the air bag become big and
the possibility of unusual breakage becomes high. Side length or diameter of the
distribution hole is preferably 5-40 mm or, more preferably, 10-30 mm. When it is
more than 40 mm, flow rate of the inflator gas becomes high and local heating is
generated whereby breakage is resulted from such a part and that is not preferred.
When it is less than 5 mm, many distribution holes are to be formed whereby the
processing cost is needed and that is not preferred. Although it is not necessary
to particularly process the surrounding of the distribution hole, such a part may
be fused by heat or may be sewed.
The slip-off resistance of the warp and the woof of the
hose of the present invention is not less than 10 N, preferably not less than 15
N and, particularly preferably, not less than 20 N. When the slip-off resistance
is less than 10 N, unusual deformation of the hose occurs near the distribution
hole due to the inflator gas or the distribution hole becomes large by such a deformation
whereby the distributing ratio is unable to be controlled and that is not preferred.
When the distribution hole becomes large, the air bag for side collision may burst
during the initial stage of its development and that is not preferred. Slip-off
resistance is able to be adjusted by the control of amount of the coat, amount of
the additive or fineness of warp and woof constituting the hose.
Diameter of the hose is preferably 20-60 mm or, preferably,
30-50 mm. When the hose diameter is less than 20 mm, breakage is apt to occur while,
when it is more than 60 mm, the hose is hardly received in the air bag for side
collision and that is not preferred.
Crimp of the woof constituting the hose is preferably smaller
than that of the warp. The woof is apt to be affected by tension and, in order to
make the influence of heat as little as possible, the part which comes out of the
surface is to be made small. Accordingly, it is better that there is no crimp in
the woof and the state of being covered by the warp is better.
Fineness of the yarn constituting the main body of the
air bag for side collision is preferably 200-600 dtex or, more preferably, 300-500
dtex. When the fineness is more than 600 dtex, its receiving property becomes a
problem. When it is less than 200 dtex, strength of the substrate cloth is insufficient
resulting in a high possibility of burst even if distribution of the inflator gas
is controlled and that is not preferred. Fineness of single yarn of the multifilament
constituting the main body of the air bag for side collision is preferably 2-10
dtex or, more preferably, 3-6 dtex. When the single yarn fineness is more than 10
dtex, rigidity of the substrate cloth becomes high and receiving property lowers.
When it is less than 2 dtex, snapping of the single yarn or the like happens upon
weaving whereby many disadvantages of the substrate cloth are resulted and that
is not preferred.
Fineness of one multifilament of warp constituting the
hose is not less than two-fold or, preferably, not less than three-fold, of fineness
of one multifilament constituting the main body of the air bag for side collision.
When the fineness of warp of the hose is less than two-fold, the hose is apt to
cause poor distribution by cutting-off of the warp in the distribution of the inflator
gas and that is not preferred.
Fineness of one multifilament of woof constituting the
hose is not less than three-fold or, preferably, not less than five-fold, of fineness
of one multifilament constituting the main body of the air bag for side collision.
When the fineness of one multifilament of woof constituting the hose is less than
three-fold, the hose is apt to cause poor distribution by cutting-off of the woof
and that is not preferred.
The present invention will now be illustrated in more detail
by the following Examples. Measurements in the Examples are carried out in accordance
with the following measuring methods.
Slip-off resistance: Conducted according to "Method A;
method for pulling out the yarn; resistance to sliding-off" of JIS L1096.
Distribution test: Into a test connecting tube where one
side was closed by sewing was introduced nitrogen gas compressed to an initial pressure
of 800 kPa to an extent of volume of 5 liters from another inlet which was not sewed
and then the state of the distribution hole was observed. The test connecting tube
was made in 2 m and five distribution holes having predetermined shape and size
were set up every 30 cm from the inlet.
With regard to the result of the evaluation, there was
observed the state of the distribution hole by deformation of warp and woof at the
nearest distribution hole from the nitrogen gas inlet in the hose after the test.
Shape of the observed distribution hole was evaluated according
to the five stages of A to D.
Examples 1~9 and Comparative Example 1
- A: deformation of the shape was hardly noted
- B: deformation of the shape was noted very little
- C: deformation of the shape was noted a little
- D: deformation of the shape was noted considerably
- E: deformation of the shape was noted significantly
A tube was woven on cylindrical weaving machine using a
polyamide 66 fiber having strength of 8.0 g/dtex, then a coating agent was uniformly
applied thereon and setting was carried out at 140°C for 5 minutes to prepare
a hose for introduction and distribution of inflator gas. Results of the Examples
and the Comparative Example of the hose for distribution of inflator gas manufactured
as such are shown in Table 1.
Material of Warp
Material of Woof
Fineness of Warp (dtex)
Fineness of Woof (dtex)
Density of Tube
Warps (nos. per inch)
Woofs (nos. per inch)
Amt of coating agent (g/m2)
Type of Additive
Amt of Additive (parts by wt)
Shape of Distribution Hole
Size of Distribution Hole (mm)
10 x 10
Evaluation of Distribution Hole
Coating agent S1: Elastosil
M-4540 manufactured by Wacker (thermosetting addition-polymerized silicone rubber)
Additive A: Adhesion Promotor HF86 manufactured by Wacker (epoxy-modified silane
CE: Comparative Example
From the results of evaluation for Examples 1 and 2 versus
4 and Examples 5 versus 6 in Table 1, it is noted that, with regard to the shape
of the distribution hole, deformation of the distribution hole is rarer in the case
of square or rectangle (Examples 1, 4 and 5) than in the case of circle (Examples
2 and 6).
From Example 1 and Example 3, it is noted that, when fineness
of warp and woof is made large (Example 1), slip-off resistance becomes high and
distribution hole is hardly deformed.
From the result of Example 7 and Example 8, it is noted
that coating amount is proportional to slip-off resistance and that, when coating
amount is high (Example 7), slip-off resistance is high and distribution hole is
From the result of Example 7 and Example 9, it is noted
that, when an epoxy-modified silane coupling agent is added as an auxiliary adhesive,
slip-off resistance is improved (Example 7) and distribution hole is hardly deformed.
It is also noted from Table 1 that the distribution hoses
of the inflator gas of the present invention (Examples 1-9) are hardly deformed
in terms of the shape of the distribution hole as compared with the inflator gas
distribution hoses of Comparative Example 1 which is not coated with a coating agent
and accordingly that they are suitable as distribution hoses.
As fully illustrated hereinabove, in the distribution hose
for inflator gas according to the present invention, breakage near the inlet of
the inflator is prevented and gas is homogeneously distributed whereby it is now
possible to provide a method for distribution of air bag for side collision having
good developing property, having good receiving property and being advantageous
in terms of cost.