The patented technology stems from the discovery that, under proper conditions, copper can quickly and reliably catalyze members of two large chemical groups, azides and alkynes.
Click chemistry focuses mainly on reactions involving azides, a class of nitrogen-containing molecules, and alkynes, a group of hydrocarbons such as acetylene.
A few reasons sodium azide may have been selected for use in airbags are it releases gas fast, the gas it releases is pure nitrogen (of course, when sodium azide is mixed with other explosive or pyrotechnic ingredients, the resulting gas composition is altered), and it's fairly stable when it's inside an airbag system under most environmental conditions automobiles encounter.
It's a tribute to airbag designers, airbag companies, and automobile manufacturers that they haven't had more problems with sodium azide.
7 Schmidt Rearrangement Reactions with Alkyl Azides
Surface modifiers currently offered include titanates, sulfonyl azide
, ester-based wetting agents, and proprietary coatings.