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While the spotlight has been shining on automatic systems in cars to avoid crashes, something interesting has been happening in the shadows: new technologies that let you survive a crash you don't avoid. We may enter the era of "peak survivability," when autonomy soon starts to reduce accidents.
Audi's Pre Sense Side uses side radar sensors that are part of the car's overall collision detection package to sense a T-bone impact right before it happens and lift the entire car 3 inches in half a second. That puts more of the impact force on the big, strong horizontal floor pan and sill beams rather than the soft doors. Mercedes Pre-Safe Impulse Side system inflates a side seat bolster right before a side crash to scoot you away from the door that's about to get hit.
Body - Ears - Study - Percent - People
Those are good for most of your body, but what about your ears? A 2007 study found that 17 percent of people will suffer some permanent hearing loss due to the loud noise of airbag deployment.
Watch this: New car crash safety tech promises almost superhero survival...
Mercedes Pre-SAFE Sound protects against hearing loss by using the ear's own behavior. When loud noises happen, the inner parts of your ears tense up and change position in a way that makes them less prone to injury. The Mercedes system emits a burst of loud but harmless noise right before...
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