Alpinestars has started to produce its first street motorcycle homologated airbag. It is called Tech-Air and its main feature is that is a ready-to-use product, there is no need a previous installation before start using it.
The airbag contains a material called “one piece woven”, that provides great resistance. The most important feature is that this airbagdoes not need any preinstalled sensor on the motorbike, so we can use it from the begining. There are two acceleration sensors on the shoulders of the jacket and one inside the turtle or back protector (where there is the airbag inflator mechanism).
This airbag is also designed for off-road, although being a sport with an increased risk of falls, the user will have to decide if wearing the airbag activated or not. In any case, for those who alternate the road with the track, the airbag protects both asphalt and off-road, gravel or mud. In this sense, it is not required to make any changes to the system; it works normally in any situation or terrain.
The airbag inflates in just 25 milliseconds and provides protection with a maximum pressure to impacts over the next 5 seconds. Tested on more than 300,000 kilometers, the Tech-Air is designed to activate on impacts over 25 km / h. At lower speeds, the system could not be opened. Also, in case of a collision stopped at a light, the system would activate itself.
The airbag is included in the back protector -homologated at level 2- of an inner jacket. This jacket for now only is supported on Viper, Valparaiso and Valparaiso Lady jackets, but it is expected that Alpinestars will increase the number of jackets homologated for the Tech-Air airbag.
The brand also recommends the use of the additional jacket protectors (on shoulders and elbows), so they will help to offer a greater protection, dissipating the energy in an event of an impact.
Apart from the airbag installed in the back protector, the tech-Air has a magnet on the lapels of the jacket, and when fastened, the magnet will activate the system, moving the position from “standby” to “on”. In this way, we ensure that the airbag can not be activated by the simple fact that the jacket falls down, but only when it is fastened. In the sleeve there is a light with three indicators that show the status of the airbag: green (up and running), yellow (stand-by mode, that is, if we do not finish to fasten the jacket will not be activated) and red (system error).
The Tech-Air battery has a life of 25 hours with the airbag activated. In “stand-by” mode, the battery is up to two months. For a completed recharged system, we need 6 hours of charge.
The battery is rechargeable up to 1,000 times and has a micro USB port to recharge the system in case of emergency, with a battery charger or similar. With this system, one hour of recharge would offer up to 4 hours of operation. The airbag can not be recharged at the same time to be used.
When we are riding, the same lights placed on the jacket sleeves will inform us about the battery charge level. With the green light there is more than 70% of charge, the yellow light, between 40% and 70% of charge level and the red light, less than 40% of charge.
The system can be used with other electronic systems, such as phones, GPS or garage door openers.
Alpinestars recommends the system inspection every two years. To do this, the customer must contact an authorized Alpinestars dealer center, indicate the serial number and proceed to send the inner vest. Delivery times may vary depending of the area.
The Tech-Air can be installed on the Viper and Valparaiso and Valparaiso Lady jackets. It is waterproof and Alpinestars recommends hand wash for its cleaning. The Tech-Air complies with EN-1621-4 for airbags.