PatentDe  


Dokumentenidentifikation EP0879491 05.01.2005
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0000879491
Titel ZÜNDPILLEN-STECKDOSEANORDNUNG MIT KURZSCHLUSSKLEMME FÜR EINEN AIRBAG EINES FAHRZEUGES
Anmelder Thomas & Betts International Inc., Sparks, Nev., US
Erfinder GAUKER, K., Bradford, Clinton Township, US
Vertreter derzeit kein Vertreter bestellt
DE-Aktenzeichen 69731821
Vertragsstaaten DE, FR, GB, IT
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 21.08.1997
EP-Aktenzeichen 979385051
WO-Anmeldetag 21.08.1997
PCT-Aktenzeichen PCT/US97/14728
WO-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0098009355
WO-Veröffentlichungsdatum 05.03.1998
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 25.11.1998
EP date of grant 01.12.2004
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 05.01.2005
IPC-Hauptklasse H01R 31/08
IPC-Nebenklasse H01R 13/504   H01R 13/703   H01R 43/20   

Beschreibung[en]
FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to the field of automotive air bags and more particularly to squib connectors for automotive air bags.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Supplemental inflatable restraints or air bag assemblies are becoming increasingly common as a safety device in vehicles throughout the world. The assembly comprises an inflatable canister located in the steering column, the passenger-side dashboard, or the side door panel. Upon a sufficiently great deceleration, the canister is inflated by an explosive device known as a squib which contains a gun powder-based material. The squib is fired electronically upon an electrical signal sent via wires from a deceleration or other sensor in the vehicle. The wires are attached to the squib via a squib connector which plugs into a receptacle or inflator socket in the squib assembly.

A common form of squib has two pins which extend within the socket, and an associated connector has two terminals which are in electrical contact with the pins when the connector is plugged into the socket. When the connector is removed from the socket, typically for servicing, a shorting clip or shunt is biassed into electrical contact with the two pins to form an electrical connection therebetween to reduce the risk of misfiring, for example, by static electricity. The connector urges the shorting clip out of electrical contact with the pins when the connector is plugged into the socket.

In a common prior art squib connector socket assembly, the socket is machined from aluminum and has a machined opening therein to receive the squib assembly and connector. However, machining is prone to depositing metal burrs and shavings in the socket, which can increase the risk of accidental firing. Additionally, it can be difficult to meet the required dimensional tolerances with machining. This socket assembly is also relatively expensive to manufacture. Further prior art squib connector and shorting clip assemblies are shown in U.S. Patents Nos. 5,275,575, 5,401,180, and 5,435,754.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a squib connector socket assembly for an automotive air bag, comprising: an inflator socket having an open interior region and opposed open ends; a socket insert having side walls having an exterior configuration conformable to and disposed within the interior region of the inflator socket, the side walls defining an interior region, the socket insert further having a bottom wall having two apertures therein and an open end opposite the bottom wall; and a squib assembly having two igniter pins disposed to extend through the two apertures in the bottom wall of the socket insert; the inflator socket being crimped about the exterior of the socket insert and the squib assembly to form an integral assembly.

The squib connector socket assembly may include a shorting clip which eliminates the problems of metal burrs, is dimensionally stable, and can be economically manufactured in high volume and low cost. The squib connector socket assembly may also include a shorting clip assembly. The shorting clip assembly may include a shorting clip fixedly disposed inside a plastic socket insert. The plastic socket insert can be readily injection molded at low cost and high volume, does not generate metal burrs, and is dimensionally stable. The inflator socket can be impact or cold head extruded, also at low cost and high speed.

The shorting clip, formed of a resilient, electrically conductive material, includes two beams which are biassed into contact with the pins of a squib assembly. The beams are able to act independently to make contact with the pins even if the pins are not parallel.

In assembly, the pins of the squib assembly are inserted into openings in the base of the plastic socket insert. The squib assembly and plastic insert are placed in the socket, and the socket is crimped around the insert and squib assembly to retain them within the socket in an inseparable, integral final assembly. When a squib connecter is plugged into a socket including a shorting clip, the connector urges the beams of the shorting clip out of electrical contact with the pins. When the squib connector is unplugged from the socket, the resilience of the shorting clip biases the beams back into contact with the pins.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention will be more fully understood from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

  • Fig. 1 is an exploded view of a squib connector socket assembly according to the present invention;
  • Fig. 2 is a top plan view of the squib connector socket assembly of Fig. 1 in an assembled configuration;
  • Fig. 3 is a cross-sectional side view taken along line A-A of Fig. 2; and
  • Fig. 4 is a cross-sectional side view taken along line B-B of Fig. 2.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The squib connector socket assembly of the present invention includes an inflator socket 12 and a shorting clip assembly 14 for use with inflation canisters of driver's side, passenger side, or side door air bags. The shorting clip assembly 14 includes a socket insert 16 which fits within the inflator socket 12, and a shorting clip 18 fixedly disposed inside the socket insert. In the assembled configuration, a squib assembly 20 having a pair of igniter pins 22 is received in the socket insert 16, and the inflator socket 12 is roll crimped about the socket insert 16 and the squib assembly 20 to form an integral squib and socket assembly, best seen in Figs. 3 and 4. The squib assembly may be any two-pin squib assembly as would be known in the art.

In the unassembled configuration, shown more particularly in Fig. 1, the inflator socket 12 is generally tubular, having a cylindrical exterior surface 26 and an interior space 28 for receiving the socket insert. An interiorly facing annular lip 30 is provided along an upper end of the socket to retain the socket insert therein. The lip may have a slope 32 on an exterior surface thereof to ease entry of a squib connector (not shown) into the socket assembly. Cut outs 34, shown in Fig. 2, may also be provided in the lip 30 for orientation of the squib connector. The inflator socket 12 is formed of aluminum, stainless steel, or other suitable metal, preferably by an impact or cold headed extrusion process, although other processes may be used. An annular flange 36 or other suitable structure may be formed, as by welding or roll forming, around the exterior of the inflator socket for fastening the socket to an air bag assembly.

The socket insert 16 is generally formed of a plastic material such as a nylon, polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), acetal, polyphenylene sulfide (PPS), liquid crystal polymer (LCP) , or other suitable material, preferably by an injection molding process, although other processes may be used. The insert has a side wall 40 having a cylindrical exterior surface 42 with an outer diameter corresponding to the inner diameter of the cylindrical interior space 28 of the inflator socket 12. The insert includes an interior section 44 defined by the interior surface 46 of the side wall. As shown, the side wall interior surface 46 is cylindrical, although other interior surface configurations, such as one or more flat surfaces, may be provided. The interior of the side wall may include a lip or shoulder 48 for receiving a latching mechanism of a squib connector (not shown). The insert 16 is open on one end 50 for receiving the squib connector. The insert further includes a bottom wall 52 on the end opposite the open end. Two openings 54 are formed in the bottom wall which are sized and spaced to receive the pins 22 of the squib assembly 20.

The shorting clip 18 is formed of a resilient, electrically conductive material such as a beryllium-copper alloy. The clip is formed from a single piece of a generally rectangular configuration having a U-shaped cut-out 60 in one portion to form two beams 62. A bend 66 transverse to the length of the beams is formed slightly beyond the base of the beams to define an upstanding member 68. The angle between the beams 62 and the upstanding member 68 formed by the bend 66 is slightly greater than 90°, as discussed further below.

In assembly, the clip 18 is placed in the insert 16 with the beams 62 extending along the bottom wall 52 of the insert and the upper edge of the upstanding member 68 placed against and fixedly attached, as by stitching, to the interior of the wall 40. Alternatively, the clip can be over molded into the insert. The upstanding member 68 may be curved, at least along an upper portion thereof, to conform to the curvature of the interior surface 46 of the insert. Alternatively, the interior surface may be provided with a flat surface adjacent the clip. Since the angle between the beams and the upstanding member is greater than 90°, the upstanding member diverges from the interior wall toward the bottom wall by a small angle, as best seen in Figs. 1 and 4.

The beams include lips 70 on the outer ends thereof to contact the pins 22 of the squib assembly 20 when inserted through the holes 54 in the insert 16. A stripe of an electrically conductive material such as gold is preferably plated on the lips to provide good electrical contact with the pins. Other conductive materials, such as silver, palladium, or silver/palladium alloys, which can be plated or otherwise suitably deposited onto the lips can be used. The lips 70 may be curved to wrap around the pins 22, thereby ensuring at least two points of contact between the lips and the pins. The ends of the lips are angled slightly away from the pins to allow a squib connector to fit between the beams 62 and the pins 22, thereby providing a dielectric insulation between beams 62 and pins 22.

Each beam 62 is formed with a slight bow along its length such that the beams rest along the bottom wall 52 at a point near the bend 66 and at a point near the lip 70, best seen in Figs. 1 and 4. The length of the beam 62 and the location of the bend forming the lip 70 are chosen such that, in the unconstrained position, when no igniter pin 22 is inserted in the socket, the bend forming the lip 70 lies at or slightly over the opening 54 in the bottom wall 52 of the insert 16. In this manner, when an igniter pin 22 is present in the socket, the pin 22 exerts a compressive force on the beam 62 tending to push the beam toward the cylindrical wall 40 of the socket insert 16. Since the clip 18 is fixed to the insert 16, this compressive force tends to further bow the beam 62. The resistance of the bow causes the beam to be biassed into contact with the pin, thereby maintaining good electrical contact. Furthermore, the two beams act independently, such that one beam can be bowed more than the other beam if, for example, the igniter pins of the squib assembly are not parallel. In addition, as noted above, the bend between the upstanding member 68 and the beams 62 is slightly greater than 90°. When a connector is pushed into the insert 16, the beam is pushed toward the cylindrical wall 40, the bend is reduced slightly and the upstanding member 68 is pushed closer to the wall 40 of the insert 16. The clip 18 moves outward toward the wall 40 of the insert 16, pulling the two beams 62 away from the pins 22. The angle of the bend 66 between the beams 62 and the upstanding member 68 is generally 10°; the exact angle can be readily chosen by one skilled in the art to achieve the desired biassing effect.

When a squib connector (not shown) is inserted into the socket 12 through the opening, the connector is able to fit between the lips 70 of the beams 62 and the pins 22 providing a dielectric insulation between the beams 62 and the pins 22. When the connector is removed, the resilience of the bowed beams and the bend between the beams and the upstanding member bias the beams back into contact with the pins.

The shorting clip is useful for preventing accidental firing of an air bag during servicing when a mechanic removes the connector. Such accidental firing may be caused, for example, by static electricity. However, some squib assemblies are not intended to be serviced, and in such cases the squib connector is not removable by a mechanic. A shorting clip is accordingly not necessary in such designs. In the present invention, the inflator socket and socket insert can also be used with non-serviceable squib assemblies, in which case the shorting clip may be left out of the assembly.

The squib connector socket assembly of the present invention is readily manufactured at high volume and low cost relative to prior art machined sockets with shorting clips. The injection molding process for the plastic insert eliminates the presence of metal burrs and slivers and is dimensionally more reliable than machining processes. The shorting clip design can readily accommodate igniter pins which are not parallel. Also, although described in relation to a two-pin squib assembly, the invention is applicable to squib assemblies with other numbers of pins. Crimping the extruded inflator socket about the insert and squib assembly results in an inseparable, integral final assembly. The squib connector socket assembly is sufficiently versatile that it can be used for both serviceable and non-serviceable squib assemblies; in the latter case, the shorting clip may be left out of the final assembly.

The invention is not to be limited by what has been particularly shown and described, except as indicated by the appended claims.


Anspruch[de]
  1. Eine Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung für einen Airbag eines Fahrzeugs, umfassend:
    • ein Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12), das einen offenen Innenbereich (28) und gegenüberliegende offene Enden aufweist;
    • einen Buchseneinsatz (16), der Seitenwände (40) mit einer Außenseite (42) aufweist, die dem Innenbereich des Gasgenerator-Buchsenteils entspricht und darin angeordnet ist, wobei die Seitenwände einen Innenbereich (44) definieren und der Buchseneinsatz weiter eine Bodenwand (52) mit zwei Öffnungen (54) und ein der Bodenwand gegenüberliegendes offenes Ende (50) aufweist; und
    • eine Zündpillen-Anordnung (20), die zwei Zünderstifte (22) aufweist, die angeordnet sind, durch die beiden Öffnungen (54) in der Bodenwand (52) des Buchseneinsatzes (16) zu ragen;
       wobei das Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12) um die Außenseite des Buchseneinsatzes (16) und die Zündpillen-Anordnung (20) gebördelt ist, um eine integrierte Anordnung zu bilden.
  2. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach Anspruch 1, weiter umfassend:
    • eine elastische, elektrisch leitende Kurzschlussklemme (18), die innerhalb des Innenbereichs des Gasgenerator-Buchsenteils (12) fest gehalten wird, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme so vorgespannt ist, dass sie einen elektrischen Kontakt mit den Zünderstiften (22) der Zündpillen-Anordnung (20) aufweist.
  3. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach Anspruch 1 oder Anspruch 2, wobei der Buchseneinsatz (16) aus einem Kunststoffmaterial gebildet ist.
  4. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach Anspruch 3, wobei das Kunststoffmaterial Nylon, Polybutylen-Terephtalat, Acetal, Polyphenylen-Sulfid oder Flüssigkristallpolymer ist.
  5. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, wobei der Buchseneinsatz (16) durch Spritzgießen hergestellt ist.
  6. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, wobei das Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12) aus einem Metallmaterial gebildet ist.
  7. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach Anspruch 6, wobei das Metallmaterial Aluminium oder rostfreier Stahl ist.
  8. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, wobei das Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12) durch Kaltfließpressen hergestellt ist.
  9. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der vorhergehenden Ansprüche, wobei das Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12) an einem der gegenüberliegenden offenen Enden einen sich nach innen ausdehnenden ringförmigen Rand (30) aufweist, wobei der Buchseneinsatz (16) an den ringförmigen Rand anstoßend angeordnet ist.
  10. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der Ansprüche 2 bis 9, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) zwei unabhängig bewegbare Finger (62) umfasst, wobei jeder Finger zu einem der beiden Zünderstifte (22) der Zündpillen-Anordnung (20) zugeordnet ist.
  11. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der Ansprüche 2 bis 10, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) ein hochstehendes Bauteil (68) und zwei Finger (62) umfasst, wobei angrenzend an einen Fuß der Finger eine Biegung (66) in der Kurzschlussklemme gebildet ist, das hochstehende Bauteil einen oberen Bereich aufweist, der an einer inneren Wand (46) des Buchseneinsatzes (14) befestigt ist und von der inneren Wand abweicht, und die Finger so entlang der Bodenwand (52) des Buchseneinsatzes (14) angeordnet sind, dass sie sich so weit ausdehnen, dass sie einen elektrischen Kontakt mit den zugeordneten Zünderstiften (22) aufweisen.
  12. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der Ansprüche 2 bis 11, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) zwei Finger (62) umfasst, wobei jeder Finger zu einem der beiden Zünderstifte (22) der Zündpillen-Anordnung (20) zugeordnet ist und sich so weit ausdehnt, dass er einen elektrischen Kontakt damit aufweist, wobei jeder Finger gebogen ist und die Bodenwand (52) des Buchseneinsatzes (14) in zwei Punkten berührt und jeder der beiden Zünderstifte (22) eine Kraft auf den zugeordneten Finger ausübt, die darauf zielt, den Finger weiter zu biegen.
  13. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach Anspruch 12, wobei jeder Finger (62) eine Lippe (70) umfasst, die an seinem einen Ende gebildet ist, um den zugeordneten Zünderstift (22) zu kontaktieren, wobei die Lippe ein abgewandtes Ende aufweist, um das Einsetzen eines Zündpillen-Steckers zwischen die Lippe und den Stift zu ermöglichen.
  14. Die Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung nach einem der Ansprüche 2 bis 13, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) aus einer Beryllium-Kupfer-Legierung gebildet ist.
  15. Ein Verfahren zur Herstellung einer Zündpillen-Steckdosenanordnung für einen Airbag eines Fahrzeugs, umfassend:
    • befestigen einer elastischen, elektrisch leitenden Kurzschlussklemme (18) in einem Kunststoff-Buchseneinsatz (16), der eine Bodenwand (52) mit zwei Öffnungen (54) und ein der Bodenwand gegenüberliegendes offenes Ende (50) aufweist, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) so aufgebaut ist, dass sie vorgespannt ist, einen elektrischen Kontakt mit zwei Zünderstiften (22) einer Zündpillen-Anordnung (20) aufzuweisen;
    • einsetzen der beiden Zünderstifte (22) der Zündpillen-Anordnung (20) in die beiden Öffnungen (54) des Buchseneinsatzes (16), wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) so vorgespannt ist, dass sie einen elektrischen Kontakt mit den Zünderstiften (22) aufweist;
    • einsetzen des Kunststoff-Buchseneinsatzes (16) und der Zündpillen-Anordnung (20) in ein Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12), das einen äußeren röhrenförmigen Aufbau und gegenüberliegende offene Enden aufweist; und
    • bördeln des Gasgenerator-Buchsenteils (12) um den Buchseneinsatz (16) und die Zündpillen-Anordnung (20), um eine integrierte Anordnung zu bilden.
  16. Das Verfahren nach Anspruch 15, wobei der Buchseneinsatz (16) durch Spritzgießen hergestellt ist.
  17. Das Verfahren nach Anspruch 15 oder 16, wobei der Buchseneinsatz (16) aus Nylon, Polybutylen-Terephtalat, Acetal, Polyphenylen-Sulfid oder Flüssigkristallpolymer hergestellt ist.
  18. Das Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 15 bis 17, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) durch Nähen an dem Buchseneinsatz (16) befestigt ist.
  19. Das Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 15 bis 18, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) in den Buchseneinsatz (16) eingeformt ist.
  20. Das Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 15 bis 19, wobei die Kurzschlussklemme (18) aus einer Beryllium-Kupfer-Legierung gebildet ist.
  21. Das Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 15 bis 20, wobei das Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12) durch Kaltfließpressen hergestellt ist.
  22. Das Verfahren nach einem der Ansprüche 15 bis 21, wobei das Gasgenerator-Buchsenteil (12) aus Aluminium oder rostfreiem Stahl hergestellt ist.
Anspruch[en]
  1. A squib connector socket assembly for an automotive air bag, comprising:
    • an inflator socket (12) having an open interior region (28) and opposed open ends;
    • a socket insert (16) having side walls (40) having an exterior configuration (42) conformable to and disposed within the interior region of the inflator socket, the side walls defining an interior region (44), the socket insert further having a bottom wall (52) having two apertures (54) therein and an open end (50) opposite the bottom wall; and
    • a squib assembly (20) having two igniter pins (22) disposed to extend through the two apertures (54) in the bottom wall (52) of the socket insert (16);
    • the inflator socket (12) being crimped about the exterior of the socket insert (16) and the squib assembly (20) to form an integral assembly.
  2. The squib connector socket assembly of claim 1, further comprising:
    • a resilient, electrically conductive, shorting clip (18) fixedly retained within the interior region of the inflator socket (12), the shorting clip biased into electrical contact with the igniter pins (22) of the squib assembly (20).
  3. The squib connector socket assembly of claim 1 or claim 2, wherein the socket insert (16) is formed of a plastic material.
  4. The squib connector socket assembly of claim 3, wherein the plastic material is a nylon, polybutylene terephthalate, acetal, polyphenylene sulfide, or liquid crystal polymer.
  5. The squib connector socket assembly of any preceding claim, wherein the socket insert (16) is injection moulded.
  6. The squib connector socket assembly of any preceding claim, wherein the inflator socket (12) is formed of a metal material.
  7. The squib connector socket assembly of claim 6, wherein the metal material is aluminium or stainless steel.
  8. The squib connector socket assembly of any preceding claim, wherein the inflator socket (12) is formed by cold headed extrusion.
  9. The squib connector socket assembly of any preceding claim, wherein the inflator socket (12) includes an inwardly extending annular lip (30) at one of the opposed open ends, the socket insert (16) disposed adjacent the annular lip.
  10. The squib connector socket assembly of any of claims 2 to 9, wherein the shorting clip (18) includes two independently movable beams (62), each beam being associated with one of the two igniter pins (22) of the squib assembly (20).
  11. The squib connector socket assembly of any of claims 2 to 10, wherein the shorting clip (18) includes an upstanding member (68) and two beams (62), a bend (66) formed in the shorting clip adjacent a base of the beams, the upstanding member having an upper portion fixedly attached to an interior wall (46) of the socket insert (14) and diverging from the interior wall, the beams being disposed along the bottom wall (52) of the socket insert (14) to extend into electrical contact with associated ones of the igniter pins (22).
  12. The squib connector socket assembly of any of claims 2 to 11, wherein the shorting clip (18) includes two beams (62), each beam being associated with and extending into electrical contact with one of the two igniter pins (22) of the squib assembly (20), each beam being bowed and in contact with the bottom wall (52) of the socket insert (14) at two points, and each of the two igniter pins (22) exerts a force on the associated beam tending to further bow the beam.
  13. The squib connector socket assembly of claim 12, wherein each beam (62) includes a lip (70) formed on an end thereof for contacting the associated igniter pin (22), the lip having a turned-away end to allow insertion of a squib connector between the lip and the pin.
  14. The squib connector socket assembly of any of claims 2 to 13, wherein the shorting clip (18) is formed of a beryllium and copper alloy.
  15. A method of forming a squib connector socket assembly for an automotive air bag, comprising:
    • fixing a resilient, electrically conductive shorting clip (18) into a plastic socket insert (16), the socket insert having a bottom wall (52) having two apertures (54) therein and an open end (50) opposite the bottom wall, the shorting clip (18) configured for biasing contact with two igniter pins (22) of a squib assembly (20);
    • inserting the two igniter pins (22) of the squib assembly (20) into the two apertures (54) of the socket insert (16) with the shorting clip (18) biased into electrical contact with the igniter pins (22);
    • inserting the plastic socket insert (16) and the squib assembly (20) into an inflator socket (12) having an exterior tubular configuration and opposed open ends; and
    • crimping the inflator socket (12) about the socket insert (16) and the squib assembly (20) to form an integral assembly.
  16. The method of claim 15, wherein the socket insert (16) is formed by injection moulding.
  17. The method of claim 15 or claim 16, wherein the socket insert (16) is formed of a nylon, polybutylene terephthalate, acetal, polyphenylene sulfide, or liquid crystal polymer.
  18. The method of any of claims 15 to 17, wherein the shorting clip (18) is fixed to the socket insert (16) by stitching.
  19. The method of any of claims 15 to 18, wherein the shorting clip (18) is moulded into the socket insert (16).
  20. The method of any of claims 15 to 19, wherein the shorting clip (18) is formed of a beryllium and copper alloy.
  21. The method of any of claims 15 to 20, wherein the inflator socket (12) is formed by cold headed extrusion.
  22. The method of any of claims 15 to 21, wherein the inflator socket (12) is formed of aluminium or stainless steel.
Anspruch[fr]
  1. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce pour un coussin gonflable de sécurité d'automobile, comprenant :
    • une douille (12) de gonfleur comportant une région intérieure ouverte (28) et des extrémités opposées ouvertes ;
    • un insert (16) de douille comportant des parois latérales (40) ayant une configuration extérieure (42) qui peut se conformer à la région intérieure de la douille de gonfleur, et qui peut y être disposée, les parois latérales définissant une région intérieure (44), l'insert de douille comportant en outre une paroi inférieure (52) possédant deux ouvertures (54) et une extrémité ouverte (50) opposée à la paroi inférieure ; et
    • un ensemble (20) d'amorce comportant deux broches (22) d'amorçage (ou allumage) disposées pour s'étendre à travers les deux ouvertures (54) réalisées dans la paroi inférieure (52) de l'insert (16) de douille ;
    • la douille (12) de gonfleur pouvant être sertie autour de l'extérieur de l'insert (16) de douille et de l'ensemble (20) d'amorce pour former un ensemble d'une seule pièce.
  2. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon la revendication 1, comprenant en outre :
    • une pince élastique (18), conductrice de l'électricité, de mise en court-circuit, maintenue fixe à l'intérieur de la région intérieure de la douille (12) de gonfleur, la pince de mise en court-circuit étant rappelée en contact électrique avec les broches (22) d'amorçage de l'ensemble (20) d'amorce.
  3. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon la revendication 1 ou la revendication 2, dans lequel l'insert (16) de douille est formé en matière plastique.
  4. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon la revendication 3, dans lequel la matière plastique est un polymère de Nylon, de poly(téréphtalate) de butylène, d'acétal, de sulfure de polyphénylène ou de cristaux liquides.
  5. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel l'insert (16) de douille est moulé par injection.
  6. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel la douille (12) de gonfleur est formée d'une matière métallique.
  7. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon la revendication 6, dans lequel la matière métallique est de l'aluminium ou de l'acier inoxydable.
  8. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel la douille (12) de gonfleur est formée par extrusion refoulée à froid.
  9. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications précédentes, dans lequel la douille (12) de gonfleur inclut une lèvre annulaire s'étendant vers l'intérieur (30) au niveau de l'une des extrémités opposées ouvertes, l'insert (16) de douille étant disposé adjacent à la lèvre annulaire.
  10. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications 2 à 9, dans lequel la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit inclut deux barrettes mobiles indépendamment (62), chaque barrette étant associée à l'une des deux broches (22) d'amorçage de l'ensemble 20 d'amorce.
  11. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications 2 à 10, dans lequel la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit inclut un élément érigé verticalement (68) et deux barrettes (62), un coude (66) formé dans la pince de mise en court-circuit adjacent à une base des barrettes, l'élément érigé verticalement comportant une partie supérieure assujettie fixe à une paroi intérieure (46) de l'insert (14) de douille et divergeant de la paroi intérieure, les barrettes étant disposées le long de la paroi inférieure (52) de l'insert (14) de douille pour s'étendre, en contact électrique, avec celles, associées, des broches (22) d'amorçage.
  12. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications 2 à 11, dans lequel la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit inclut deux barrettes (62), chaque barrette étant associée à l'une des deux broches (22) d'amorçage de l'ensemble (20) d'amorce, et s'étendant en contact électrique avec celle-ci, chaque barrette étant arquée et en contact avec la paroi inférieure (52) de l'insert (14) de douille au niveau de deux points, et chacune des deux broches (22) d'amorçage exerce une force sur la barrette associée, force qui tente à arquer davantage la barrette.
  13. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon la revendication 12, dans lequel chaque barrette (62) inclut une lèvre (70) formée sur son extrémité, destinée à contacter la broche (22) d'amorçage associée, la lèvre comportant une extrémité tournée à l'écart permettant une introduction d'un connecteur d'amorce entre la lèvre et la broche.
  14. Ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce selon l'une quelconque des revendications 2 à 13, dans lequel la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit est formée d'alliage de béryllium et de cuivre.
  15. Procédé de formation d'un ensemble de douille de connecteur d'amorce pour un coussin d'air de sécurité d'automobile, comprenant :
    • la fixation d'une pince élastique, conductrice de l'électricité, (18) de mise en court-circuit dans un insert (16) de douille en matière plastique, l'insert de douille comportant une paroi inférieure (52) possédant deux ouvertures (54), et une extrémité ouverte (50) opposée à la paroi inférieure, la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit étant configurée pour rappel en contact avec deux broches (22) d'amorçage d'un ensemble (20) d'amorce ;
    • l'introduction des deux broches (22) d'amorçage de l'ensemble (20) d'amorce dans les deux ouvertures (54) de l'insert (16) de douille, la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit étant rappelée en contact électrique avec les broches (22) d'amorçage ;
    • l'introduction de l'insert (16) de douille en matière plastique et de l'ensemble (20) d'amorce dans une douille (12) de gonfleur ayant une configuration extérieure tubulaire et comportant des extrémités opposées ouvertes ; et
    • le sertissage de la douille (12) de gonfleur autour de l'insert (16) de douille et de l'ensemble (20) d'amorce pour former un ensemble d'une seule pièce.
  16. Procédé selon la revendication 15, dans lequel l'insert (16) de douille est formé par moulage par injection.
  17. Procédé selon la revendication 15 ou la revendication 16, dans lequel l'insert (16) de douille est formé d'un polymère de Nylon, de poly(téréphtalate) de butylène, d'acétal, de sulfure de polyphénylène, ou de cristaux liquides.
  18. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 15 à 17, dans lequel la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit est fixée, par brochage, à l'insert de douille.
  19. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 15 à 18, dans lequel la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit est moulée dans l'insert (16) de douille.
  20. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 15 à 19, dans lequel la pince (18) de mise en court-circuit est formée d'un alliage de béryllium et de cuivre.
  21. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 15 à 20, dans lequel la douille (12) de gonfleur est formée par extrusion refoulée à froid.
  22. Procédé selon l'une quelconque des revendications 15 à 21, dans lequel la douille (12) de gonfleur est formée d'aluminium ou d'acier inoxydable.






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