riACT-Head Restraints Contribute to Five-Star Rating

By Johnson Controls Automotive Experience, PRNE
Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Johnson Controls' Innovation Leads the Market in Whiplash Prevention

BURSCHEID, Germany, August 26, 2010 - Picture is available via epa european pressphoto agency and can be
downloaded free of charge at: www.presseportal.de/pm/19526/1671126

Johnson Controls supplies pro-active riACT-head restraints for the front
seats of the new BMW 5 Series sedan, GT and Touring models, minimizing the
risk of whiplash in the event of a rear impact. Euro NCAP-simulations have
verified the positive results of Johnson Controls' in-house tests: The BMW 5
Series was awarded the highest grade, "good", for the protection of its front
seats in the case of a rear impact.

"The riACT-head restraints in the BMW 5 Series are impressive, with their
protection capability, high degree of comfort and attractive pricing,"
commented Alexander Hasler, director sales of Johnson Controls Automotive
Experience's riACT-system worldwide. Hasler, a medical doctor and
biomechanist, has been working on the causes of whiplash-injuries and
technologies to prevent them over the last decade.

Whiplash is an injury sustained in rear-end collisions and is the result
of being impacted while either in a slowly travelling or stationary car. "The
rear impact causes the occupants' bodies to be accelerated forward while
their unsupported heads abruptly move backward in relation to their bodies.
As a result, the cervical vertebrae are often stretched to such a degree that
ligaments, muscles, intervertebral discs and nerves suffer injuries. Typical
consequences are headaches, neck-pain, nausea, vomiting and difficulties in
concentrating," Hasler explained. Effective protection is provided by active
head restraints. They prevent the harmful rearward displacement of the head
by providing it with effective support in the event of a rear impact.

To achieve this effect, the head restraint must be positioned as close to
the back of the head as possible. "Many drivers, however, find this constant
contact between head and head restraint uncomfortable," Hasler admits. Thus
Johnson Controls' riACT-head restraint is not only height- but also
horizontally adjustable. The front-passengers can move the self-locking
front-section of the head restraint over a span of 54 millimeters, to find a
comfortable distance between head and restraint.

In a rear-end collision in which the differential speed is greater than 6
mph, a small, pyrotechnic initiator releases a telescopic mechanism inside
the head restraint. In a fraction of a second it extends the front-section of
the head restraint forward to support the head before it snaps backward,
preventing or at least greatly mitigating serious consequences associated
with whiplash. "Even if the head restraint is set to give greater clearance
from the back of the head, this system still guarantees optimum protection."
Hasler describes the main benefit of Johnson Controls' pro-active head
restraint as follows: "Irrespective of its positioning, in the event of an
accident, within 25 milliseconds the front-surface of the head restraint is
in place to support the head before the whiplash-motion can even happen."

The riACT-system chosen by BMW is activated by a signal supplied by the
vehicle's crash sensors; hence it always deploys its maximum protective
function irrespective of the occupant's height, weight or seating-position.
Johnson Controls supplies its pro-active riACT-head restraints to BMW's
assembly lines ready-cabled and pre-tested. Once on the line, it is inserted
into the seatbacks and connected up to the vehicle's CAN bus.

Full press release and photos are available at

    Further information is available from:

    Johnson Controls GmbH
    Automotive Experience
    Industriestrasse 20-30
    51399 Burscheid

    Ulrich Andree
    Tel.: +49-2174-65-4343
    Fax: +49-2174-65-3219
    E-mail: ulrich.andree@jci.com

Further information is available from: Johnson Controls GmbH, Automotive Experience, Industriestrasse 20-30, 51399 Burscheid, Germany; Ulrich Andree, Tel.: +49-2174-65-4343, Fax: +49-2174-65-3219, E-mail: ulrich.andree at jci.com

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