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Automobiles are being equipped with airbags that inflate on collision to protect the driver or passenger from injury. A car's airbag is located on the steering wheel, this airbag is for the driver, and on the dashboard, this airbag is for the passenger. Automobile airbags are inflated by the electrical system and sensors in the car that triggers a chemical reaction to occur. When a car is involved in a car accident the airbag rapidly inflates and deflates to cushion the driver or passenger. In addition, for an airbag to successfully inflate, the propellant goes through a chemical reaction to produce the gas that inflates the airbag.

An airbag is successfully inflated when the automobile's electrical system and sensor detect that the automobile has been involved in an accident. This whole process is part of a complex electrical system that a car is equipped with. The sensors consist of a tube containing a ball held in place by a spring. In a frontal impact, the ball is forced against the spring in proportion to the severity of the crash. Other systems use an accelerometer instead of crash sensors, frequently located within the steering column or in the airbag assembly itself. An accelerometer is more sophisticated than the ball-in-tube crash sensor, and will likely see more widespread use in future models. Nearly all airbag designs are engineered to inflate when the sensors register a crash equivalent to hitting a solid barrier at 10-12 miles per hour. When a car is involved in an accident, and it loses velocity, and the impact is hard and fast enough, it triggers the airbag's sensors. When the sensors detect that a high-impacted front-end collision has occurred it sends an electric current to a wire. This wire heats up, sending electricity into a heating element in the propellant, causing it to oxidize rapidly and the charge in the inflator of the airbag undergoes a chemical reaction, producing a gas that rapidly inflates the bag.

Airbags on the car's steering wheel or the car's dashboard, go through a rapid process so the airbag can inflate. The airbags are securely packed inside the steering wheel or on the dashboard ready to inflate when the car's sensors detect a crash. To prevent or lessen any harsh injuries during a crash resulting from the driver or passenger's face hitting the airbag, manufacturers use one of four different folding patterns, they are accordion, modified accordion, pleated accordion, and overlapped fold to pack the airbag into the steering wheel and dashboard. The folds are designed to ...

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