Automotive and truck component supplier Delphi Corp. said interest is growing in Battery Disconnect Safety Devices or BDSDs, not only in cars but also in commercial vehicles. Currently, only German automakers make BDSDs standard equipment on their vehicles, Delphi said.

Delphi said its BDSD pyrotechnically disconnects high currents or voltages in less than one millisecond after an electric signal is triggered; this severs the current that flows through the cable connecting the battery with the starter and alternator to reduce the risk of post-crash fires.

The company said the high electric currents flowing from battery cables to start up vehicles prohibits the use of fuses and that current can continue to flow following a vehicle crash. This poses the threat of high-temperature short circuits and arcing, which could lead to a fire.

Delphi noted that BDSDs sever that high-voltage electrical connection, protecting against damage to equipment and injuries to workers caused by unchecked electrical currents and power surges.

While the technology isn’t new, it’s being expanded now, the company said. For example, a safe engine restart option could be offered to allow drivers to restart vehicles following a collision if there are no electrical hazards.

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