Ford is Basically Using a Whoopee Cushion to Enhance Seat Comfort

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A patent filed by Ford reveals a bladder system for seats.

The American automaker applied for the patent on September 3, 2015, but it wasn’t until now that it has been published. Ford is looking to incorporate a seat bladder between a support and trim material face that is positively pressurized (filled up) when the seat is unoccupied. The system uses an elastomeric reservoir paired with the seat bladder via a fluid line, wherein fluid moves to and pressurizes the reservoir when a passenger is seated on the seat. There is also a rigid containment unit that is configured to house the reservoir and limit expansion of the reservoir.

SEE ALSO: Ford is Looking to Make its Pickup Trucks Even More Versatile

Basically when no one is sitting on the seat, the bladder is filled with air so that the seat appears to be flat. But once a passenger sits on the seat, the air is moved out of the bladder and into a reservoir allowing the passenger to sink lower into the seat, providing comfort as well as more headroom. Air is moved back from the reservoir into the bladder once the passenger gets out of the vehicle.

In the patent application, Ford says, “The importance of providing a comfortable seating interface inside a vehicle has increased as drivers and passengers spend more time commuting in vehicles. The seating assemblies of these vehicles should also be durable and aesthetically pleasing.”

It will be interesting to see if Ford puts this technology to use in one of its future vehicles. For now, we don’t believe it makes any farting noises.

Discuss this story on our Ford Forum

  • smartacusⓊ

    you mean they weren’t using whoopee cushions till now? :p

  • Perry F. Bruns

    Wait until you see how they’re planning to help us bypass rest stops.