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How a lifesaver for pilots is making life safer for millions

Although everything that is developed here at Saab is almost always specialised, it frequently leads to new applications that make life safer and more secure. One of the earliest examples goes back to the early days of aviation. Back then, if an aircraft lost manoeuvrability the pilot simply climbed out of the cockpit and jumped.

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In the 1940s, with the J 21 fighter aircraft, Saab was forced to find another solution. It would have been fatal to climb out of the cockpit as the propeller was positioned behind the pilot. Especially at 400 km/h.

The solution was an ejection seat that used powder charges and rockets to catapult the pilot out. The seat was later supplemented with straps that were pulled tight by powder charges to prevent limbs from being injured upon launch.

The ejection seat is now a natural element of pilot safety. And the sensors that were developed for the ejection seat can today be found in the airbags that have improved driver safety for millions of people throughout the world.