Gear News, News

Swing survey: Arus airbag reserve

Monday 18 April, 2016

In order to help them put the Arus (Automatic Reserve and Safety System) airbag-rescue chute harness into production, Swing are inviting pilots to complete a quick survey on their website.

The Arus system is a harness with a dual-airbag and rescue chute system, intended to maximise pilot protection in the event of a reserve parachute being deployed.

The front-mounted reserve container has a brightly coloured reserve handle in easy view of the pilot. One pull of the handle and the main underseat-and-back airbag, and the additional side airbags, are released with activation times of 1.5-2 seconds, and a spring-loaded drogue chute is deployed to pull the main reserve out of its container. A dual-reserve system is also being planned, the second reserve being deployed if necessary by further pulling the same handle.

We wondered about the risk in case of a water landing. Could it result in the pilot being tipped or held upside-down? Swing’s Nicolas Eggert stressed that a life vest should always be worn when flying over water, and this system does not in any way negate the need for that. However, Swing have planned for water landings, and explain that on striking water, the middle airbag deflates allowing water to enter it through the ventilation system, making it bottom-heavy; the side airbags remain inflated to give the pilot buoyancy.

The initial Arus design is for a no-cocoon, traditional all-round harness, although Swing have plans to develop a system for cocoon harnesses later on.

To help them get this idea into production, you could complete the short survey on their website, here.

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