Elevator

Elevator

Overview

An elevator is a type of vertical transport
Transport
Transport or transportation is the movement of people, cattle, animals and goods from one location to another. Modes of transport include air, rail, road, water, cable, pipeline, and space. The field can be divided into infrastructure, vehicles, and operations...

 equipment that efficiently moves people or goods between floors (levels, deck
Deck (building)
In architecture, a deck is a flat surface capable of supporting weight, similar to a floor, but typically constructed outdoors, often elevated from the ground, and usually connected to a building...

s) of a building, vessel or other structures. Elevators are generally powered by electric motors that either drive traction cables or counterweight systems like a hoist
Hoist (device)
A hoist is a device used for lifting or lowering a load by means of a drum or lift-wheel around which rope or chain wraps. It may be manually operated, electrically or pneumatically driven and may use chain, fiber or wire rope as its lifting medium. The load is attached to the hoist by means of a...

, or pump hydraulic fluid to raise a cylindrical piston like a jack.

Languages other than English may have loanword
Loanword
A loanword is a word borrowed from a donor language and incorporated into a recipient language. By contrast, a calque or loan translation is a related concept where the meaning or idiom is borrowed rather than the lexical item itself. The word loanword is itself a calque of the German Lehnwort,...

s based on either elevator (e.g., Korean
Korean language
Korean is the official language of the country Korea, in both South and North. It is also one of the two official languages in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture in People's Republic of China. There are about 78 million Korean speakers worldwide. In the 15th century, a national writing...

 & Japanese
Japanese language
is a language spoken by over 130 million people in Japan and in Japanese emigrant communities. It is a member of the Japonic language family, which has a number of proposed relationships with other languages, none of which has gained wide acceptance among historical linguists .Japanese is an...

) or lift (e.g., Russian
Russian language
Russian is a Slavic language used primarily in Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. It is an unofficial but widely spoken language in Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Turkmenistan and Estonia and, to a lesser extent, the other countries that were once constituent republics...

 & Cantonese
Cantonese
Cantonese is a dialect spoken primarily in south China.Cantonese may also refer to:* Yue Chinese, the Chinese language that includes Cantonese* Cantonese cuisine, the cuisine of Guangdong province...

).
Because of wheelchair access laws, elevators are often a legal requirement in new multistory buildings, especially where wheelchair ramps would be impractical.

Some people argue that lifts began as simple rope or chain hoist
Hoist (device)
A hoist is a device used for lifting or lowering a load by means of a drum or lift-wheel around which rope or chain wraps. It may be manually operated, electrically or pneumatically driven and may use chain, fiber or wire rope as its lifting medium. The load is attached to the hoist by means of a...

s (see Traction elevators below).
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Encyclopedia

An elevator is a type of vertical transport
Transport
Transport or transportation is the movement of people, cattle, animals and goods from one location to another. Modes of transport include air, rail, road, water, cable, pipeline, and space. The field can be divided into infrastructure, vehicles, and operations...

 equipment that efficiently moves people or goods between floors (levels, deck
Deck (building)
In architecture, a deck is a flat surface capable of supporting weight, similar to a floor, but typically constructed outdoors, often elevated from the ground, and usually connected to a building...

s) of a building, vessel or other structures. Elevators are generally powered by electric motors that either drive traction cables or counterweight systems like a hoist
Hoist (device)
A hoist is a device used for lifting or lowering a load by means of a drum or lift-wheel around which rope or chain wraps. It may be manually operated, electrically or pneumatically driven and may use chain, fiber or wire rope as its lifting medium. The load is attached to the hoist by means of a...

, or pump hydraulic fluid to raise a cylindrical piston like a jack.

Languages other than English may have loanword
Loanword
A loanword is a word borrowed from a donor language and incorporated into a recipient language. By contrast, a calque or loan translation is a related concept where the meaning or idiom is borrowed rather than the lexical item itself. The word loanword is itself a calque of the German Lehnwort,...

s based on either elevator (e.g., Korean
Korean language
Korean is the official language of the country Korea, in both South and North. It is also one of the two official languages in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture in People's Republic of China. There are about 78 million Korean speakers worldwide. In the 15th century, a national writing...

 & Japanese
Japanese language
is a language spoken by over 130 million people in Japan and in Japanese emigrant communities. It is a member of the Japonic language family, which has a number of proposed relationships with other languages, none of which has gained wide acceptance among historical linguists .Japanese is an...

) or lift (e.g., Russian
Russian language
Russian is a Slavic language used primarily in Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. It is an unofficial but widely spoken language in Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Turkmenistan and Estonia and, to a lesser extent, the other countries that were once constituent republics...

 & Cantonese
Cantonese
Cantonese is a dialect spoken primarily in south China.Cantonese may also refer to:* Yue Chinese, the Chinese language that includes Cantonese* Cantonese cuisine, the cuisine of Guangdong province...

).
Because of wheelchair access laws, elevators are often a legal requirement in new multistory buildings, especially where wheelchair ramps would be impractical.

Design


Some people argue that lifts began as simple rope or chain hoist
Hoist (device)
A hoist is a device used for lifting or lowering a load by means of a drum or lift-wheel around which rope or chain wraps. It may be manually operated, electrically or pneumatically driven and may use chain, fiber or wire rope as its lifting medium. The load is attached to the hoist by means of a...

s (see Traction elevators below). A lift is essentially a platform that is either pulled or pushed up by a mechanical means. A modern day lift consists of a cab (also called a "cage" or "car") mounted on a platform within an enclosed space called a shaft or sometimes a "hoistway". In the past, lift drive mechanisms were powered by steam and water hydraulic pistons or by hand. In a "traction" lift, cars are pulled up by means of rolling steel ropes over a deeply grooved pulley
Pulley
A pulley, also called a sheave or a drum, is a mechanism composed of a wheel on an axle or shaft that may have a groove between two flanges around its circumference. A rope, cable, belt, or chain usually runs over the wheel and inside the groove, if present...

, commonly called a sheave in the industry. The weight of the car is balanced by a counterweight
Counterweight
A counterweight is an equivalent counterbalancing weight that balances a load.-Uses:A counterweight is often used in traction lifts , cranes and funfair rides...

. Sometimes two lifts always move synchronously in opposite directions, and they are each other's counterweight.

The friction between the ropes and the pulley furnishes the traction which gives this type of lift its name.

Hydraulic lifts use the principles of hydraulics
Hydraulics
Hydraulics is a topic in applied science and engineering dealing with the mechanical properties of liquids. Fluid mechanics provides the theoretical foundation for hydraulics, which focuses on the engineering uses of fluid properties. In fluid power, hydraulics is used for the generation, control,...

 (in the sense of hydraulic power) to pressurize an above ground or in-ground piston to raise and lower the car (see Hydraulic elevators below). Roped hydraulics use a combination of both ropes and hydraulic power to raise and lower cars. Recent innovations include permanent magnet motors, machine room-less rail mounted gearless machines, and microprocessor controls.

The technology used in new installations depends on a variety of factors. Hydraulic lifts are cheaper, but installing cylinders greater than a certain length becomes impractical for very high lift hoistways. For buildings of much over seven storeys, traction lifts must be employed instead. Hydraulic lifts are usually slower than traction lifts.

Lifts are a candidate for mass customization
Mass customization
Mass customization, in marketing, manufacturing, call centres and management, is the use of flexible computer-aided manufacturing systems to produce custom output...

.
There are economies to be made from mass production
Mass production
Mass production is the production of large amounts of standardized products, including and especially on assembly lines...

 of the components, but each building comes with its own requirements like different number of floors, dimensions of the well and usage patterns.

Elevator doors


Elevator doors protect riders from falling into the shaft. The most common configuration is to have two panels that meet in the middle, and slide open laterally. In a cascading telescopic configuration (potentially allowing wider entryways within limited space), the doors run on independent tracks so that while open, they are tucked behind one another, and while closed, they form cascading layers on one side. This can be configured so that two sets of such cascading doors operate like the center opening doors described above, allowing for a very wide elevator cab. In less expensive installations the elevator can also use one large "slab" door: a single panel door the width of the doorway that opens to the left or right laterally. Some buildings have elevators with the single door on the shaft way, and double cascading doors on the cab.

Machine room-less (MRL) Elevators



General

for a single or a group of elevators.

Machine room-less elevators are designed so that most of the components fit within the shaft containing the elevator car; and a small cabinet houses the elevator controller. Other than the machinery being in the hoistway, the equipment is similar to a normal traction elevator.

This new design was first developed by Kone
KONE
Kone Oyj , founded in 1910 and headquartered in Espoo, Finland, is an international engineering and service company employing some 32,500 personnel worldwide. The firm is the fourth largest manufacturer of elevators worldwide, a leading manufacturer of escalators, and also provides maintenance...

 in 1996.

Benefits
  • creates more usable space
  • use less energy (70-80% less than hydraulic elevators)
  • uses no oil
  • all components are above ground similar to roped hydraulic type elevators (this takes away the environmental concern that was created by the hydraulic cylinder
    Hydraulic cylinder
    A Hydraulic cylinder is a mechanical actuator that is used to give a unidirectional force through a unidirectional stroke. It has many applications, notably in engineering vehicles.- Operation :...

     on direct hydraulic type elevators being stored underground)
  • slightly lower cost than other elevators
  • can operate at faster speeds than hydraulics but not normal traction units

Detriments
  • Equipment can be harder to service and maintain.
  • No code has been approved for the installation of Residential elevator Equipment.


Facts
  • Noise level is at 50-55 dBA (A-weighted decibels), which can be lower than some but not all types of elevators
  • Usually used for low-rise
    Low-rise
    A low-rise is a building that is only a few stories tall.There is no universally accepted height requirement for a building to be considered a low-rise...

     to mid-rise buildings
  • The motor mechanism is placed in the hoistway itself
  • The US was slow to accept the commercial MRL Elevator because of codes

---national and local building codes did not address elevators without machine rooms. Residential MRL Elevators are still not allowed by the ASME A17 code in the US.

Elevator Traffic Calculations


Round trip time calculations

The majority of elevator designs are developed from Up Peak Round Trip Time calculations as described in the following publications:-
CIBSE Guide D: Transportation Systems in Building
Elevator Traffic Handbook, Theory and Practice. Gina Barney
The Vertical Transportation Handbook. George Strakosch

Traditionally these calculations have formed the basis of establishing the Handling Capacity of an elevator system.

Modern Installations with more complex elevator arrangements have led to the development of more specific formulae such as the General Analysis calculation.

Subsequently this has been extended for Double Deck elevators.

Simulation

Elevator traffic simulation software can be used to model complex traffic patterns and elevator arrangements that cannot necessarily be analysed by RTT calculations.

Lift traffic patterns

There are four main types of elevator traffic patterns that can be observed in most modern office installations. They are up peak traffic, down peak traffic, lunch time (two way) traffic and interfloor traffic.

Elevator modernization


Most elevators are built to provide about 20 years of service, as long as service intervals specified and periodic maintenance/inspections by the manufacturer are followed. As the elevator ages and equipment become increasingly difficult to find or replace, along with code changes and deteriorating ride performance, a complete overhaul of the elevator may be suggested to the building owners.

A typical modernization consists of controller equipment, electrical wiring and buttons, position indicators and direction arrows, hoist machines and motors (including door operators), and sometimes door hanger tracks. Rarely are car slings, rails, or other heavy structures changed. The cost of an elevator modernization can range greatly depending on which type of equipment is to be installed.

Modernization can greatly improve operational reliability by replacing mechanical relays and contacts with solid-state electronics. Ride quality can be improved by replacing motor-generator-based drive designs with Variable-Voltage, Variable Frequency (V3F) drives
Variable frequency drive
A variable-frequency drive is a system for controlling the rotational speed of an alternating current electric motor by controlling the frequency of the electrical power supplied to the motor. A variable frequency drive is a specific type of adjustable-speed drive...

, providing near-seamless acceleration and deceleration. Passenger safety is also improved by updating systems and equipment to conform to current codes.

History


The first reference to an elevator is in the works of the Roman architect Vitruvius
Vitruvius
Marcus Vitruvius Pollio was a Roman writer, architect and engineer, active in the 1st century BC. He is best known as the author of the multi-volume work De Architectura ....

, who reported that Archimedes
Archimedes
Archimedes of Syracuse was a Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor, and astronomer. Although few details of his life are known, he is regarded as one of the leading scientists in classical antiquity. Among his advances in physics are the foundations of hydrostatics, statics and an...

 (c. 287 BC – c. 212 BC) built his first elevator probably in 236 BC. In some literary sources of later historical periods, elevators were mentioned as cabs on a hemp rope and powered by hand or by animals. It is supposed that elevators of this type were installed in the Sinai monastery
Monastery
Monastery denotes the building, or complex of buildings, that houses a room reserved for prayer as well as the domestic quarters and workplace of monastics, whether monks or nuns, and whether living in community or alone .Monasteries may vary greatly in size – a small dwelling accommodating only...

 of Egypt.

In 1000, the Book of Secrets by Ibn Khalaf al-Muradi
Al-Muradi
Alī Ibn Khalaf al-Murādī, Al-Andalus, was an engineer and author of the unique technological manuscript entitled Kitāb al-asrār fī natā'ij al-afkār . It was copied and used at the court of Alfonso VI of León and Castile in Christian Spain in the 11th century...

 in Islamic Spain
Al-Andalus
Al-Andalus was the Arabic name given to a nation and territorial region also commonly referred to as Moorish Iberia. The name describes parts of the Iberian Peninsula and Septimania governed by Muslims , at various times in the period between 711 and 1492, although the territorial boundaries...

 described the use of an elevator-like lifting device, in order to raise a large battering ram to destroy a fortress. In the 17th century the prototypes of elevators were located in the palace buildings of England and France.

Ancient and medieval elevators used drive systems based on hoists or winders. The invention of a system based on the screw drive was perhaps the most important step in elevator technology since ancient times, leading to the creation of modern passenger elevators. The first screw drive elevator was built by Ivan Kulibin
Ivan Kulibin
Ivan Petrovich Kulibin was a Russian mechanic and inventor. He was born in Nizhny Novgorod in the family of a trader. From childhood, Kulibin displayed an interest in constructing mechanical tools. Soon, clock mechanisms became a special interest of his...

 and installed in Winter Palace
Winter Palace
The Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg, Russia, was, from 1732 to 1917, the official residence of the Russian monarchs. Situated between the Palace Embankment and the Palace Square, adjacent to the site of Peter the Great's original Winter Palace, the present and fourth Winter Palace was built and...

 in 1793. Several years later another of Kulibin's elevators was installed in Arkhangelskoye near Moscow
Moscow
Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

. In 1823, an "ascending room" made its debut in London.
In the middle 1800s, there were many types of crude elevators that carried freight. Most of them ran hydraulically. The first hydraulic elevators used a plunger below the car to raise or lower the elevator. A pump applied water pressure to a steel column inside a vertical cylinder. Increasing the pressure caused the elevator to ascend. The elevator also used a system of counter-balancing so that the plunger did not have to lift the entire weight of the elevator and its load. The plunger, however, was not practical for tall buildings, because it required a pit as deep below the building as the building was tall. Later, a rope-geared elevator with multiple pulleys was developed.

Henry Waterman of New York is credited with inventing the "standing rope control" for an elevator in 1850.The Elevator Museum, timeline

In 1852, Elisha Otis
Elisha Otis
Elisha Graves Otis was an American industrialist, founder of the Otis Elevator Company, and inventor of a safety device that prevents elevators from falling if the hoisting cable fails. He worked on this device while living in Yonkers, New York in 1852, and had a finished product in...

 introduced the safety elevator, which prevented the fall of the cab if the cable broke. The design of the Otis safety elevator is somewhat similar to one type still used today. A governor device engages knurled roller(s), locking the elevator to its guides should the elevator descend at excessive speed. He demonstrated it at the New York exposition in the Crystal Palace
New York Crystal Palace
New York Crystal Palace was an exhibition building constructed for the Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations in New York City in 1853, which was under the presidency of Mayor Jacob Aaron Westervelt...

 in a dramatic, death-defying presentation in 1854.

On March 23, 1857 the first Otis passenger elevator was installed at 488 Broadway
E. V. Haughwout Building
The E.V. Haughwout Building is a five-story, 79-foot tall, commercial loft building in the SoHo section of Manhattan, New York City, at the corner of Broome Street and Broadway. Built in 1857 to a design by John P. Gaynor, with cast-iron sections for two street-fronts provided by Daniel D....

 in New York City.

The first elevator shaft preceded the first elevator by four years. Construction for Peter Cooper
Peter Cooper
Peter Cooper was an American industrialist, inventor, philanthropist, and candidate for President of the United States...

's Cooper Union
Cooper Union
The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, commonly referred to simply as Cooper Union, is a privately funded college in the East Village neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City, United States, located at Cooper Square and Astor Place...

 Foundation building in New York
History of New York City
The history of New York, New York begins with the first European documentation of the area by Giovanni da Verrazzano, in command of the French ship, La Dauphine, when he visited the region in 1524. It is believed he sailed in Upper New York Bay where he encountered native Lenape, returned through...

 began in 1853. An elevator shaft was included in the design, because Cooper was confident that a safe passenger elevator would soon be invented. The shaft was cylindrical
Cylinder (geometry)
A cylinder is one of the most basic curvilinear geometric shapes, the surface formed by the points at a fixed distance from a given line segment, the axis of the cylinder. The solid enclosed by this surface and by two planes perpendicular to the axis is also called a cylinder...

 because Cooper felt it was the most efficient design. Later, Otis designed a special elevator for the building. Today the Otis Elevator Company
Otis Elevator Company
The Otis Elevator Company is the world's largest manufacturer of vertical transportation systems today, principally focusing on elevators and escalators...

, now a subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation
United Technologies Corporation
United Technologies Corporation is an American multinational conglomerate headquartered in the United Technologies Building in Hartford, Connecticut...

, is the world's largest manufacturer of vertical transport systems.

The first electric elevator was built by Werner von Siemens
Ernst Werner von Siemens
Ernst Werner Siemens, von Siemens since 1888, was a German inventor and industrialist. Siemens' name has been adopted as the SI unit of electrical conductance, the siemens...

 in 1880. The safety and speed of electric elevators were significantly enhanced by Frank Sprague
Frank J. Sprague
Frank Julian Sprague was an American naval officer and inventor who contributed to the development of the electric motor, electric railways, and electric elevators...

. The inventor Anton Freissler
Anton Freissler
Anton Freissler, aka Anton Freißler invented and developed a number of paternoster and elevators.- Biography :...

 developed the ideas of von Siemens and built up a successful enterprise in Austria-Hungary.

The development of elevators was led by the need for movement of raw materials including coal
Coal
Coal is a combustible black or brownish-black sedimentary rock usually occurring in rock strata in layers or veins called coal beds or coal seams. The harder forms, such as anthracite coal, can be regarded as metamorphic rock because of later exposure to elevated temperature and pressure...

 and lumber
Lumber
Lumber or timber is wood in any of its stages from felling through readiness for use as structural material for construction, or wood pulp for paper production....

 from hillsides. The technology developed by these industries and the introduction of steel beam construction worked together to provide the passenger and freight elevators in use today.

In 1874, J.W. Meaker patented a method which permitted elevator doors to open and close safely.

In 1882, when hydraulic power was a well established technology, a company later named the London Hydraulic Power Company
London Hydraulic Power Company
The London Hydraulic Power Company was set up by an Act of Parliament in 1883 to install a hydraulic power network of high-pressure cast iron water mains under London. It was the successor to the Steam Wharf and Warehouse Company, founded in 1871 by Edward B Ellington...

 was formed. It constructed a network of high pressure mains on both sides of the Thames which, ultimately, extended to 184 miles and powered some 8,000 machines, predominantly lifts (elevators) and cranes.

In 1887, American Inventor Alexander Miles
Alexander Miles
Alexander Miles was an African-American inventor who was best known for being awarded a patent for an automatically opening and closing elevator door design in 1887. Contrary to many sources, Miles was not the original inventor of this device. In 1874, 13 years before Miles' patent was awarded,...

 of Duluth, Minnesota patented an elevator with automatic doors that would close off the elevator shaft.

Cable-borne elevators


Statistically speaking, cable-borne elevators are extremely safe. Their safety record is unsurpassed by any other vehicle system. In 1998, it was estimated that approximately eight millionths of one percent (1 in 12 million) of elevator rides result in an anomaly, and the vast majority of these were minor things such as the doors failing to open. For all practical purposes, there are no cases of elevators simply free-falling and killing the passengers inside; of the 20 to 30 elevator-related deaths each year, most of them are maintenance-related - for example, technicians leaning too far into the shaft or getting caught between moving parts, and most of the rest are attributed to easily avoidable accidents, such as people stepping blindly through doors that open into empty shafts or being strangled by scarves caught in the doors. In fact, prior to the September 11th terrorist attacks, the only known free-fall incident in a modern cable-borne elevator happened in 1945 when a B-25 bomber struck the Empire State Building
B-25 Empire State Building crash
The B-25 Empire State Building crash was a 1945 aircraft accident in which a B-25 Mitchell piloted in thick fog crashed into the Empire State Building...

 in fog, severing the cables of an elevator cab, which fell from the 75th floor all the way to the bottom of the building, seriously injuring (though not killing) the sole occupant - the female elevator operator. However, there was an incident in 2007 at a Seattle children's hospital, where a ThyssenKrupp ISIS machine room-less elevator free-fell until the safety brakes were engaged. This was due to a flaw in the design where the cables were connected at one common point, and the kevlar ropes had a tendency to overheat and cause slipping (or, in this case, a free-fall). While it is possible (though extraordinarily unlikely) for an elevator's cable to snap, all elevators in the modern era have been fitted with several safety devices which prevent the elevator from simply free-falling and crashing. An elevator cab is typically borne by six or eight hoist cables, each of which is capable on its own of supporting the full load of the elevator plus twenty-five percent more weight. In addition, there is a device which detects whether the elevator is descending faster than its maximum designed speed; if this happens, the device causes copper brake shoes to clamp down along the vertical rails in the shaft, stopping the elevator quickly, but not so abruptly as to cause injury. This device is called the governor, and was invented by Elisha Graves Otis. In addition, a hydraulic buffer is installed at the bottom of the shaft to somewhat cushion any impact.

Hydraulic elevators


Past problems with early hydraulic elevators meant those built prior to a code change in 1972 were subject to possible catastrophic failure
Catastrophic failure
A catastrophic failure is a sudden and total failure of some system from which recovery is impossible. Catastrophic failures often lead to cascading systems failure....

. The code had previously required only single-bottom hydraulic cylinder
Hydraulic cylinder
A Hydraulic cylinder is a mechanical actuator that is used to give a unidirectional force through a unidirectional stroke. It has many applications, notably in engineering vehicles.- Operation :...

s. In the event of a cylinder breach, an uncontrolled fall of the elevator might result. Because it is impossible to verify the system completely without a pressurized casing (as described below), it is necessary to remove the piston to inspect it. The cost of removing the piston is such that it makes no economic sense to re-install the old cylinder; therefore it is necessary to replace the cylinder and install a new piston. Another solution to protect against a cylinder blowout is to install a "life jacket." This is a device which, in the event of an excessive downward speed, clamps onto the cylinder and stops the car. A device known as a rupture valve is often attached to the hydraulic inlet/outlet of the piston and can be adjusted for a maximum flow rate. If a pipe or hose were to break (rupture), the flow rate of the rupture valve will surpass a set limit and mechanically stop the outlet flow of hydraulic fluid, thus stopping the piston and the car in the down direction.

In addition to the safety concerns for older hydraulic elevators, there is risk of leaking hydraulic oil into the aquifer
Aquifer
An aquifer is a wet underground layer of water-bearing permeable rock or unconsolidated materials from which groundwater can be usefully extracted using a water well. The study of water flow in aquifers and the characterization of aquifers is called hydrogeology...

 and causing potential environmental contamination. This has led to the introduction of PVC
Polyvinyl chloride
Polyvinyl chloride, commonly abbreviated PVC, is a thermoplastic polymer. It is a vinyl polymer constructed of repeating vinyl groups having one hydrogen replaced by chloride. Polyvinyl chloride is the third most widely produced plastic, after polyethylene and polypropylene. PVC is widely used in...

 liners (casings) around hydraulic cylinders which can be monitored for integrity.

In the past decade, recent innovations in inverted hydraulic jack
Hydraulic cylinder
A Hydraulic cylinder is a mechanical actuator that is used to give a unidirectional force through a unidirectional stroke. It has many applications, notably in engineering vehicles.- Operation :...

s have eliminated the costly process of drilling the ground to install a borehole jack. This also eliminates the threat of corrosion to the system and increases safety.

Mine-shaft elevators


Safety testing of mine shaft elevator rails is routinely undertaken. The method involves destructive testing of a segment of the cable. The ends of the segment are frayed, then set in conical zinc
Zinc
Zinc , or spelter , is a metallic chemical element; it has the symbol Zn and atomic number 30. It is the first element in group 12 of the periodic table. Zinc is, in some respects, chemically similar to magnesium, because its ion is of similar size and its only common oxidation state is +2...

 mold
Mold
Molds are fungi that grow in the form of multicellular filaments called hyphae. Molds are not considered to be microbes but microscopic fungi that grow as single cells called yeasts...

s. Each end of the segment is then secured in a large, hydraulic stretching machine. The segment is then placed under increasing load to the point of failure
Failure
Failure refers to the state or condition of not meeting a desirable or intended objective, and may be viewed as the opposite of success. Product failure ranges from failure to sell the product to fracture of the product, in the worst cases leading to personal injury, the province of forensic...

. Data about elasticity, load, and other factors is compiled and a report is produced. The report is then analyzed to determine whether or not the entire rail is safe to use.

Uses of elevators




Passenger service


A passenger elevator is designed to move people between a building's floors.

Passenger elevators capacity is related to the available floor space. Generally passenger elevators are available in capacities from 1000 to- in 500 lb (230 kg) increments. Generally passenger elevators in buildings eight floors or less are hydraulic or electric, which can reach speeds up to 200 ft/min (1.0 m/s) hydraulic and up to 500 ft/min electric. In buildings up to ten floors, electric and gearless elevators are likely to have speeds up to 500 ft/min (2.5 m/s), and above ten floors speeds begin at 500 ft/min (2.5 m/s) up to 2000 ft/min (10 m/s).

Sometimes passenger elevators are used as a city transport along with funicular
Funicular
A funicular, also known as an inclined plane or cliff railway, is a cable railway in which a cable attached to a pair of tram-like vehicles on rails moves them up and down a steep slope; the ascending and descending vehicles counterbalance each other.-Operation:The basic principle of funicular...

s. For example, there is a 3-station underground public elevator in Yalta
Yalta
Yalta is a city in Crimea, southern Ukraine, on the north coast of the Black Sea.The city is located on the site of an ancient Greek colony, said to have been founded by Greek sailors who were looking for a safe shore on which to land. It is situated on a deep bay facing south towards the Black...

, Ukraine
Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

, which takes passengers from the top of a hill above the Black Sea on which hotels are perched, to a tunnel located on the beach below. At Casco Viejo station in the Bilbao Metro, the elevator that provides access to the station from a hilltop neighborhood doubles as city transportation: the station's ticket barriers are set up in such a way that passengers can pay to reach the elevator from the entrance in the lower city, or vice versa. See also the Elevators for urban transport section.

The Equitable Building completed in 1870 in New York City was the first office building to have passenger elevators.

Types of passenger elevators


Passenger elevators may be specialized for the service they perform, including: hospital emergency (Code blue), front and rear entrances, a television in high rise buildings, double decker
Double-deck elevator
Double-deck elevators are designed with two elevator cars that are attached, one on top of the other. This allows passengers on two consecutive floors to be able to use the elevator simultaneously, significantly increasing the passenger capacity of an elevator shaft...

, and other uses. Cars may be ornate in their interior appearance, may have audio visual advertising, and may be provided with specialized recorded voice instructions.

An express elevator does not serve all floors. For example, it moves between the ground floor and a skylobby
Skylobby
A sky lobby is an intermediate floor where people can change from an express elevator that stops only at the sky lobby to a local elevator which stops at every floor within a segment of the building...

, or it moves from the ground floor or a skylobby to a range of floors, skipping floors in between. These are especially popular in eastern Asia.

Capacity


Residential elevators may be small enough to only accommodate one person while some are large enough for more than a dozen.
Wheelchair, or platform lifts, a specialized type of elevator designed to move a wheelchair
Wheelchair
A wheelchair is a chair with wheels, designed to be a replacement for walking. The device comes in variations where it is propelled by motors or by the seated occupant turning the rear wheels by hand. Often there are handles behind the seat for someone else to do the pushing...

 6 ft (1.8 m) or less, can often accommodate just one person in a wheelchair at a time with a load of 1000 lb (450 kg).

Freight elevators



A freight elevator, or goods lift, is an elevator designed to carry goods, rather than passengers. Freight elevators are generally required to display a written notice in the car that the use by passengers is prohibited (though not necessarily illegal), though certain freight elevators allow dual use through the use of an inconspicuous riser.
Freight elevators are typically larger and capable of carrying heavier loads than a passenger elevator, generally from 2,300 to 4,500 kg. Freight elevators may have manually operated doors, and often have rugged interior finishes to prevent damage while loading and unloading. Although hydraulic freight elevators exist, electric elevators are more energy efficient for the work of freight lifting.

Stage lifts


Stage and orchestra lifts are specialized lifts, typically powered by hydraulics, that are used to lift entire sections of a theater stage. For example, Radio City Music Hall
Radio City Music Hall
Radio City Music Hall is an entertainment venue located in New York City's Rockefeller Center. Its nickname is the Showplace of the Nation, and it was for a time the leading tourist destination in the city...

 has four such lifts: an "orchestra lift" that covers a large area of the stage, and three smaller lifts near the rear of the stage. In this case, the orchestra lift is powerful enough to raise an entire orchestra, or an entire cast of performers (including live elephants) up to stage level from below.

Vehicle elevators


Vehicular elevators are used within buildings or areas with limited space (in lieu of ramps), typically to move car
Čar
Čar is a village in the municipality of Bujanovac, Serbia. According to the 2002 census, the town has a population of 296 people.-References:...

s into the parking garage or manufacturer's storage. Geared hydraulic chains (not unlike bicycle chains) generate lift for the platform and there are no counterweights. To accommodate building designs and improve accessibility, the platform may rotate so that the driver only has to drive forward. Most vehicle elevators have a weight capacity of 2 tons.

Rare examples of extra-heavy elevators for 20-ton lorries
Lorry
-Transport:* Lorry or truck, a large motor vehicle* Lorry, or a Mine car in USA: an open gondola with a tipping trough* Lorry , a horse-drawn low-loading trolley-In fiction:...

, and even for railcar
Railcar
A railcar, in British English and Australian English, is a self-propelled railway vehicle designed to transport passengers. The term "railcar" is usually used in reference to a train consisting of a single coach , with a driver's cab at one or both ends. Some railways, e.g., the Great Western...

s (like one that was used at Dnipro Station
Dnipro (Kiev Metro)
Dnipro is a station on the Kiev Metro's Sviatoshynsko-Brovarska Line). Named after the Dnieper River, the station consists of a semi-estacade over the embankment highway, and then continues across the river as part of the Metro Bridge...

 of the Kiev Metro
Kiev Metro
The Kiev Metro is a metro system that is the mainstay of Kiev's public transport. It was the first rapid transit system in Ukraine and the third one built in the USSR . It now has three lines with a total length of 63.7 kilometres and 49 stations...

) also occur.

Boat elevators



In some smaller canals, boats and small ships can pass between different levels of a canal with a boat lift rather than through a canal lock
Lock (water transport)
A lock is a device for raising and lowering boats between stretches of water of different levels on river and canal waterways. The distinguishing feature of a lock is a fixed chamber in which the water level can be varied; whereas in a caisson lock, a boat lift, or on a canal inclined plane, it is...

.

Aircraft elevators



On aircraft carrier
Aircraft carrier
An aircraft carrier is a warship designed with a primary mission of deploying and recovering aircraft, acting as a seagoing airbase. Aircraft carriers thus allow a naval force to project air power worldwide without having to depend on local bases for staging aircraft operations...

s, elevators carry aircraft between the flight deck and the hangar deck for operations or repairs. These elevators are designed for much greater capacity than other elevators, up to 200,000 pounds (90 tonne
Tonne
The tonne, known as the metric ton in the US , often put pleonastically as "metric tonne" to avoid confusion with ton, is a metric system unit of mass equal to 1000 kilograms. The tonne is not an International System of Units unit, but is accepted for use with the SI...

s) of aircraft and equipment. Smaller elevators lift munitions to the flight deck from magazines deep inside the ship.

On some passenger double-deck aircraft
Double-deck aircraft
A Double-deck aircraft has two decks for passengers; the second deck may be only a partial deck, and may be above or below the main deck. Almost all commercial aircraft have one passenger deck and one cargo deck for luggage and ULD containers, but only a few have two decks for passengers,...

 such as the Boeing 747
Boeing 747
The Boeing 747 is a wide-body commercial airliner and cargo transport, often referred to by its original nickname, Jumbo Jet, or Queen of the Skies. It is among the world's most recognizable aircraft, and was the first wide-body ever produced...

, Lockheed L-1011
Lockheed L-1011
The Lockheed L-1011 TriStar, commonly referred to as the L-1011 or TriStar, is a medium-to-long range, widebody passenger trijet airliner. It was the third widebody airliner to enter commercial operations, following the Boeing 747 and the McDonnell Douglas DC-10. Between 1968 and 1984, Lockheed...

 or other widebody aircraft, lifts transport flight attendants and food and beverage trolleys from lower deck galleys
Galley (kitchen)
The galley is the compartment of a ship, train or aircraft where food is cooked and prepared. It can also refer to a land based kitchen on a naval base or a particular formed household kitchen.-Ship's kitchen:...

 to upper passenger carrying decks.

Residential elevator


The residential elevator is often permitted to be of lower cost and complexity than full commercial elevators. They may have unique design characteristics suited for home furnishings, such as hinged wooden shaft-access doors rather than the typical metal sliding doors of commercial elevators. Construction may be less robust than in commercial designs with shorter maintenance periods, but safety systems such as locks on shaft access doors, fall arrestors, and emergency phones must still be present in the event of malfunction.

Limited Use / Limited Application


The limited-use, limited-application (LU/LA) elevator is a special purpose passenger elevator used infrequently, and which is exempt from many commercial regulations and accommodations. For example, a LU/LA is primarily meant to be handicapped accessible, and there might only be room for a single wheelchair and a standing passenger.

Dumbwaiter



Dumbwaiters are small freight elevators that are intended to carry food rather than passengers. They often link kitchens with rooms on other floors.

Paternoster




A special type of elevator is the paternoster, a constantly moving chain of boxes. A similar concept, called the manlift or humanlift, moves only a small platform, which the rider mounts while using a handhold and was once seen in multi-story industrial plants.

Scissor lift


The scissor lift is yet another type of lift. As most of these lifts are self-contained, these lifts can be easily moved to where they are needed.

Rack-and-pinion lift


The rack-and-pinion lift is another type of lift. This lifts are simpler in construction, but noisy and slow. They are nonetheless the most used type of lift for buildings under construction (to move materials and tools up and down).

Material handling belts and belt elevators


A different kind of elevator is used to transport material. It generally consists of an inclined plane on which a conveyor belt runs. The conveyor often includes partitions to prevent the material from sliding backwards. These elevators are often used in industrial and agricultural applications.
When such mechanisms (or spiral screws or pneumatic transport) are used to elevate grain for storage in large vertical silos, the entire structure is called a grain elevator
Grain elevator
A grain elevator is a tower containing a bucket elevator, which scoops up, elevates, and then uses gravity to deposit grain in a silo or other storage facility...

.

There have occasionally been lift belts for humans; these typically have steps about every seven feet along the length of the belt, which moves vertically, so that the passenger can stand on one step and hold on to the one above. These belts are sometimes used, for example, to carry the employees of parking garages, but are considered too dangerous for public use.

Types of hoist mechanisms



There are at least four means of moving an elevator:

Traction elevators

  • Geared and gearless traction elevators

Geared traction machines are driven by AC
Alternating current
In alternating current the movement of electric charge periodically reverses direction. In direct current , the flow of electric charge is only in one direction....

 or DC
Direct current
Direct current is the unidirectional flow of electric charge. Direct current is produced by such sources as batteries, thermocouples, solar cells, and commutator-type electric machines of the dynamo type. Direct current may flow in a conductor such as a wire, but can also flow through...

 electric motors. Geared machines use worm gears to control mechanical movement of elevator cars by "rolling" steel hoist ropes over a drive sheave which is attached to a gearbox driven by a high speed motor. These machines are generally the best option for basement or overhead traction use for speeds up to 500 ft/min (2.5 m/s). In order to allow accurate speed control of the motor, to allow accurate levelling and for passenger comfort, a DC hoist motor powered by an AC/DC motor-generator
Motor-generator
A motor-generator is a device for converting electrical power to another form. Motor-generator sets are used to convert frequency, voltage, or phase of power. They may also be used to isolate electrical loads from the electrical power supply line...

 (MG) set was the preferred solution in high-traffic elevator installations for many decades. The MG set also typically powered the relay
Relay logic
Relay logic is a method of controlling industrial electronic circuits by using relays and contacts.-Ladder logic:The schematic diagrams for relay logic circuits are often called line diagrams, because the inputs and outputs are essentially drawn in a series of lines...

 controller of the elevator, which has the added advantage of electrically isolating the elevators from the rest of a building's electrical system - eliminating the transient power spikes in the building's electrical supply caused by the motors starting and stopping (causing lighting to dim every time the elevators are used for example), as well as interference to other electrical equipment caused by the arcing of the relay contactors in the control system.

Contemporary cheaper installations, such as those in residential buildings and low-traffic commercial applications generally used a single or two speed AC hoist machine. The widespread availability of cheap solid state AC drives has allowed infinitely variable speed AC motors to be used universally, bringing with it the advantages of the older motor-generator based systems, without the penalties in terms of efficiency and complexity. The older MG-based installations are gradually being replaced in older buildings due to their poor energy efficiency.

Gearless traction machines are low speed (low RPM), high torque
Torque
Torque, moment or moment of force , is the tendency of a force to rotate an object about an axis, fulcrum, or pivot. Just as a force is a push or a pull, a torque can be thought of as a twist....

 electric motors powered either by AC or DC. In this case, the drive sheave is directly attached to the end of the motor. Gearless traction elevators can reach speeds of up to 2,000 ft/min (10 m/s), or even higher. A brake is mounted between the motor and drive sheave (or gearbox) to hold the elevator stationary at a floor. This brake is usually an external drum type
Drum brake
A drum brake is a brake in which the friction is caused by a set of shoes or pads that press against a rotating drum-shaped part called a brake drum....

 and is actuated by spring force and held open electrically; a power failure will cause the brake to engage and prevent the elevator from falling (see inherent safety
Inherent safety
Inherent safety is a concept particularly used in the chemical and process industries. An inherently safe process has a low level of danger even if things go wrong. It is used in contrast to safe systems where a high degree of hazard is controlled by protective systems...

 and safety engineering
Safety engineering
Safety engineering is an applied science strongly related to systems engineering / industrial engineering and the subset System Safety Engineering...

).

In each case, cables are attached to a hitch plate on top of the cab or may be "underslung" below a cab, and then looped over the drive sheave to a counterweight
Counterweight
A counterweight is an equivalent counterbalancing weight that balances a load.-Uses:A counterweight is often used in traction lifts , cranes and funfair rides...

 attached to the opposite end of the cables which reduces the amount of power
Power (physics)
In physics, power is the rate at which energy is transferred, used, or transformed. For example, the rate at which a light bulb transforms electrical energy into heat and light is measured in watts—the more wattage, the more power, or equivalently the more electrical energy is used per unit...

 needed to move the cab. The counterweight is located in the hoist-way and rides a separate railway system; as the car goes up, the counterweight goes down, and vice versa. This action is powered by the traction machine which is directed by the controller, typically a relay logic or computerized device that directs starting, acceleration
Acceleration
In physics, acceleration is the rate of change of velocity with time. In one dimension, acceleration is the rate at which something speeds up or slows down. However, since velocity is a vector, acceleration describes the rate of change of both the magnitude and the direction of velocity. ...

, deceleration and stopping of the elevator cab. The weight of the counterweight is typically equal to the weight of the elevator cab plus 40-50% of the capacity of the elevator. The grooves in the drive sheave are specially designed to prevent the cables from slipping. "Traction
Traction (engineering)
Traction refers to the maximum frictional force that can be produced between surfaces without slipping.The units of traction are those of force, or if expressed as a coefficient of traction a ratio.-Traction:...

" is provided to the ropes by the grip of the grooves in the sheave, thereby the name. As the ropes age and the traction grooves wear, some traction is lost and the ropes must be replaced and the sheave repaired or replaced. Sheave and rope wear may be significantly reduced by ensuring that all ropes have equal tension, thus sharing the load evenly. Rope tension equalisation may be achieved using a rope tension gauge, and is a simple way to extend the lifetime of the sheaves and ropes.

Elevators with more than 100' (30 m) of travel have a system called compensation. This is a separate set of cables or a chain attached to the bottom of the counterweight and the bottom of the elevator cab. This makes it easier to control the elevator, as it compensates for the differing weight of cable between the hoist and the cab. If the elevator cab is at the top of the hoist-way, there is a short length of hoist cable above the car and a long length of compensating cable below the car and vice versa for the counterweight. If the compensation system uses cables, there will be an additional sheave in the pit below the elevator, to guide the cables. If the compensation system uses chains, the chain is guided by a bar mounted between the counterweight railway lines.

Hydraulic elevators

  • Conventional hydraulic elevators. They use an underground cylinder, are quite common for low level buildings with 2-5 floors (sometimes but seldom up to 6-8 floors), and have speeds of up to 200 feet/minute (1 meter/second).
  • Holeless hydraulic elevators were developed in the 1970s, and use a pair of above ground cylinders, which makes it practical for environmentally or cost sensitive buildings with 2, 3, or 4 floors.
  • Roped hydraulic elevators use both above ground cylinders and a rope system, which combines the reliability of inground hydraulic with the versatility of holeless hydraulic, even though they can serve up to 8-10 floors.


The low mechanical complexity of hydraulic elevators in comparison to traction elevators makes them ideal for low rise, low traffic installations. The main disadvantage is their lower efficiency – with no counterbalancing, they require more power to operate – and most of the potential energy
Potential energy
In physics, potential energy is the energy stored in a body or in a system due to its position in a force field or due to its configuration. The SI unit of measure for energy and work is the Joule...

 of the car once it is raised is lost since gravity is used to lower the car. The high current draw of the pump when starting up also places higher demands on a building’s electrical system. There are also environmental concerns should either the lifting cylinder leak fluid into the ground.

The modern generation of low cost, machine room-less traction elevators made possible by advances in motor and motor drive technology is beginning to challenge the supremacy of the hydraulic elevator in their traditional market niche.

Climbing elevator


A climbing elevator is a self-ascending elevator with its own propulsion. The propulsion can be done by an electric or a combustion engine. Climbing elevators are used in guyed masts or towers, in order to make easy access to parts of these constructions, such as flight safety lamps for maintenance. An example would be the Moonlight tower
Moonlight tower
Moonlight towers are lighting structures designed to illuminate areas of a city at night.The structures were popular in the late 19th century in cities across the United States and Europe; they were most common in the 1880s-1890s...

s in Austin, Texas, where the elevator holds only one person and equipment for maintenance. The Glasgow Tower
Glasgow Tower
Glasgow Tower is a free-standing tower located on the south bank of the River Clyde in Glasgow, Scotland and forms part of Glasgow Science Centre complex.-Background and world records:...

 - an observation tower in Glasgow
Glasgow
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the River Clyde in the country's west central lowlands...

, Scotland
Scotland
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Occupying the northern third of the island of Great Britain, it shares a border with England to the south and is bounded by the North Sea to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the...

 also makes use of two climbing elevators.

Concept


Elevator air conditioning is fast becoming a popular concept around the world. The primary reason for installing an elevator air conditioner is the comfort that it provides while traveling in the elevator. It stabilizes the condition of the air inside the lift car. Some elevator air conditioners can be used in countries with cold climates if a thermostat is used to reverse the refrigeration cycle to warm the lift car.

Health


One of the benefits of installing an elevator air conditioner is the clean air it provides.
Air was typically drawn from the elevator shaft or hoistway into the car using a motorized fan. This air could contain dust mites, germs and bacteria. With an elevator air conditioner, the air is much cleaner because it is recirculated within the car itself and is usually filtered to remove contaminants. A poorly maintained air-conditioning system may promote the growth and spread of microorganisms, but as long as the air conditioner is kept clean, these health hazards can be avoided.

Drawbacks


Heat generated from the cooling process is dissipated into the hoistway. The elevator cab (or car) is not air-tight, and some of this heat will reenter the car and reduce the overall cooling effect, which may be less than ideal.

Energy



The air from the lobby constantly leaks into the elevator shaft due to elevator movements as well as elevator shaft ventilation requirements. Using this conditioned air in the elevator does not increase energy costs. However, by using an independent elevator air conditioner to achieve better temperature control inside the car, more energy will be used.

Condensation


Air conditioning poses a problem to elevators because of the condensation that occurs. The condensed water produced has to be disposed of; otherwise, it would create flooding in the elevator car and hoistway.

Ways to remove condensed water


There are at least four ways to remove condensed water from the air conditioner. However, each solution has its pros and cons.

Atomizing


Atomizing, also known as misting the condensed water, is another way to dispose of the condensed water. Spraying ultra-fine water droplets onto the hot coils of the air conditioner ensures that the condensed water evaporates quickly.

Though this is one of the best methods to dispose of the condensed water, it is also one of the costliest because the nozzle that atomizes the water easily gets choked. The majority of the cost goes to maintaining the entire atomizing system.

Boiling


Disposing of condensed water works by firstly collecting the condensed water and then heating it to above boiling point. The condensed water is eventually evaporated, thereby disposing of it.

Consumers are reluctant to employ this system because of the high rate of energy used just to dispose of this water.

Cascading


The cascading method works by flowing the condensed water directly onto the hot coils of the air conditioner. This eventually evaporates the condensed water.

The downside of this technology is that the coils have to be at extremely high temperature for the condensed water to be evaporated. There is a chance that the water might not evaporate entirely and that would cause water to overflow onto the exterior of the car.

Drainage system


Drainage system works by creating a sump to collect the condensed water and using a pump to dispose it through a drainage system.

It is an efficient method, but it comes at a heavy price because the cost of building the sump. Moreover, maintaining the pump to make sure it operates is very expensive. Furthermore, the pipes used for drainage would look ugly on the exterior. This system also cannot be implemented on a built project.

Controlling elevators


Early elevators had no automatic landing positioning. Elevators were operated by elevator operator
Elevator operator
An elevator operator is a person specifically employed to operate a manually operated elevator...

s using a motor controller. The controller was contained within a cylindrical container about the size and shape of a cake container and this was operated via a projecting handle. This allowed some control over the energy supplied to the motor (located at the top of the elevator shaft or beside the bottom of the elevator shaft) and so enabled the elevator to be accurately positioned — if the operator was sufficiently skilled. More typically the operator would have to "jog" the control to get the elevator reasonably close to the landing point and then direct the outgoing and incoming passengers to "watch the step". Some older freight elevators are controlled by switches operated by pulling on adjacent ropes. Safety interlocks ensure that the inner and outer doors are closed before the elevator is allowed to move. Most older manually controlled elevators have been retrofitted with automatic or semi-automatic controls.

Automatic elevators began to appear as early as the 1930s, their development being hastened by striking
Strike action
Strike action, also called labour strike, on strike, greve , or simply strike, is a work stoppage caused by the mass refusal of employees to work. A strike usually takes place in response to employee grievances. Strikes became important during the industrial revolution, when mass labour became...

 elevator operators which brought large cities dependent on skyscrapers (and therefore their elevators) such as New York and Chicago to their knees. These electromechanical systems used relay logic
Relay logic
Relay logic is a method of controlling industrial electronic circuits by using relays and contacts.-Ladder logic:The schematic diagrams for relay logic circuits are often called line diagrams, because the inputs and outputs are essentially drawn in a series of lines...

 circuits of increasing complexity to control the speed, position and door operation of an elevator or bank of elevators. The Otis Autotronic system of the early 1950s brought the earliest predictive systems which could anticipate traffic patterns within a building to deploy elevator movement in the most efficient manner. Relay-controlled elevator systems remained common until right up until the 1980s, and their gradual replacement with solid-state microprocessor
Microprocessor
A microprocessor incorporates the functions of a computer's central processing unit on a single integrated circuit, or at most a few integrated circuits. It is a multipurpose, programmable device that accepts digital data as input, processes it according to instructions stored in its memory, and...

 based controls which are now the industry standard.

General controls




A typical modern passenger elevator will have:
  • Space to stand in, guardrails, seating cushion (luxury)
  • Overload sensor—prevents the elevator from moving until excess load has been removed. It may trigger a voice prompt or buzzer alarm. This may also trigger a "full car" indicator, indicating the car's inability to accept more passengers until some are unloaded.
  • Electric fans or air conditioning units to enhance circulation and comfort.
  • Call buttons to choose a floor. Some of these may be key switches (to control access). In some elevators, certain floors are inaccessible unless one swipes a security card or enters a passcode (or both). In the United States and other countries, call button text and icons are raised to allow blind users to operate the elevator; many have Braille
    Braille
    The Braille system is a method that is widely used by blind people to read and write, and was the first digital form of writing.Braille was devised in 1825 by Louis Braille, a blind Frenchman. Each Braille character, or cell, is made up of six dot positions, arranged in a rectangle containing two...

     text besides.
  • A set of doors kept locked on each floor to prevent unintentional access into the elevator shaft by the unsuspecting individual. The door is unlocked and opened by a machine sitting on the roof of the car, which also drives the doors that travel with the car. Door controls are provided to close immediately or reopen the doors. Objects in the path of the moving doors will either be detected by sensors or physically activate a switch that reopens the doors. Otherwise, the doors will close after a preset time.

  • A stop switch (not allowed under British regulations) to halt the elevator while in motion and often used to hold an elevator open while freight is loaded. Keeping an elevator stopped for too long may trigger an alarm. Unless local codes require otherwise, this will most likely be a key switch
    Key switch
    A key switch is a switch that can be activated only by a key.Key switches are usually used in situations where access needs to be restricted to the switch's functions....

    .

  • An alarm button or switch, which passengers can use to signal that they have been trapped in the elevator.


Some elevators may have one or more of the following:
  • An elevator telephone
    Telephone
    The telephone , colloquially referred to as a phone, is a telecommunications device that transmits and receives sounds, usually the human voice. Telephones are a point-to-point communication system whose most basic function is to allow two people separated by large distances to talk to each other...

    , which can be used (in addition to the alarm) by a trapped passenger to call for help.
  • Hold button: This button delays the door closing timer, useful for loading freight and hospital beds.
  • Call cancellation: A destination floor may be deselected by double clicking.
  • Access restriction by key switches, RFID reader, code keypad, hotel room card, etc..
  • One or more additional sets of doors that can serve different floor plans. For example, in an elevated crosswalk setup, the front doors may open on the street level, and the rear doors open on the crosswalk level.
  • Security camera
  • Plain walls or mirrored walls giving the illusion of larger area
  • Glass windowpane providing a view of the building interior or onto the streets.


Other controls, which are generally inaccessible to the public (either because they are key switch
Key switch
A key switch is a switch that can be activated only by a key.Key switches are usually used in situations where access needs to be restricted to the switch's functions....

es, or because they are kept behind a locked panel), include:
  • Fireman's service, phase II key switch
  • Switch to enable or disable the elevator.
  • An inspector's switch, which places the elevator in inspection mode (this may be situated on top of the elevator)
  • Manual up/down controls for elevator technicians, to be used in inspection mode, for example.
  • An independent service/exclusive mode (also known as "Car Preference"), which will prevent the car from answering to hall calls and only arrive at floors selected via the panel. The door should stay open while parked on a floor. This mode may be used for temporarily transporting goods.
  • Attendant service mode.


  • * Large buildings with multiple elevators of this type also had an elevator dispatcher stationed in the lobby to direct passengers and to signal the operator to leave with the use of a mechanical "cricket" noisemaker.

External controls



Elevators are typically controlled from the outside by up and down buttons at each stop. When pressed at a certain floor, the elevator arrives to pick up more passengers. If the particular elevator is currently serving traffic in a certain direction, it will only answer hall calls in the same direction unless there are no more calls beyond that floor.

In a group of two or more elevators, the call buttons may be linked to a central dispatch computer, such that they illuminate and cancel together. This is done to ensure that only one car is called at one time.

Key switches may be installed on the ground floor so that the elevator can be remotely switched on or off from the outside.

In destination control systems, one selects the intended destination floor (in lieu of pressing "up") and is then notified which elevator will serve their request.

Floor numbering


The elevator algorithm


The elevator algorithm
Elevator algorithm
The elevator algorithm is a disk scheduling algorithm to determine the motion of the disk's arm and head in servicing read and write requests....

, a simple algorithm
Algorithm
In mathematics and computer science, an algorithm is an effective method expressed as a finite list of well-defined instructions for calculating a function. Algorithms are used for calculation, data processing, and automated reasoning...

 by which a single elevator can decide where to stop, is summarized as follows:
  • Continue traveling in the same direction while there are remaining requests in that same direction.
  • If there are no further requests in that direction, then stop and become idle, or change direction if there are requests in the opposite direction.

The elevator algorithm has found an application in computer operating system
Operating system
An operating system is a set of programs that manage computer hardware resources and provide common services for application software. The operating system is the most important type of system software in a computer system...

s as an algorithm for scheduling hard disk
Hard disk
A hard disk drive is a non-volatile, random access digital magnetic data storage device. It features rotating rigid platters on a motor-driven spindle within a protective enclosure. Data is magnetically read from and written to the platter by read/write heads that float on a film of air above the...

 requests.
Modern elevators use more complex heuristic algorithms to decide which request to service next. An introduction to these algorithms can be found in the "Elevator traffic handbook: theory and practice" given in the references below.

Destination Control System


Some skyscraper buildings and other types of installation feature a destination operating panel where a passenger registers their floor calls before entering the car. The system lets them know which car to wait for, instead of everyone boarding the next car. In this way, travel time is reduced as the elevator makes fewer stops for individual passengers, and the computer distributes adjacent stops to different cars in the bank. Although travel time is reduced passenger waiting times may be longer as they will not necessarily be allocated the next car to depart. During the down peak period the benefit of destination control will be limited as passengers have a common destination.

It can also improve accessibility, as a mobility-impaired passenger can move to his or her designated car in advance.

Inside the elevator there is no call button to push, or the buttons are there but they cannot be pushed - except door opening and alarm button – they only indicate stopping floors.

The idea of destination control was originally conceived by Leo Port from Sydney in 1961 but at that time lift controllers were implemented in relays and were unable to optimise the performance of destination control allocations.

The system was first pioneered by Schindler Elevator
Schindler Group
thumb|200px|Schindler Test Tower in Ebikon, Lucerne, SwitzerlandSchindler was founded in Switzerland in 1874 and is the largest manufacturer of escalators and the second largest manufacturer of elevators world wide. Schindler produces, installs, maintains and modernizes elevators and escalators in...

 in 1992 as the Miconic 10. Manufacturers of such systems claim that average traveling time can be reduced by up to 30%.

However, performance enhancements cannot be generalized as the benefits and limitations of the system are dependent on many factors. One problem is that the system is subject to gaming. Sometimes, one person enters the destination for a large group of people going to the same floor. The dispatching algorithm
Algorithm
In mathematics and computer science, an algorithm is an effective method expressed as a finite list of well-defined instructions for calculating a function. Algorithms are used for calculation, data processing, and automated reasoning...

 is usually unable to completely cater for the variation, and latecomers may find the elevator they are assigned to is already full. Also, occasionally, one person may press the floor multiple times. This is common with up/down buttons when people believe this to be an effective way to hurry elevators. However, this will make the computer think multiple people are waiting and will allocate empty cars to serve this one person.

To prevent this problem, in one implementation of destination control, every user gets an RFID card to identify himself so the system knows every user call and can cancel the first call if the passenger decides to travel to another destination to prevent empty calls. The newest invention knows even where people are located and how many on which floor because of their identification, either for the purposes of evacuating the building or for security reasons.

The same destination scheduling concept can also be applied to public transit such as in group rapid transit.

Anti-Crime Protection (ACP)


Anti-Crime Protection will force each car to stop at a pre-defined landing and open its doors. This allows a security guard or a receptionist at the landing to visually inspect the passengers. The car stops at this landing as it passes to serve further demand.

Up peak (MIT)


During Up Peak mode (also called Moderate Incoming Traffic), elevator cars in a group are recalled to the lobby to provide expeditious service to passengers arriving at the building, most typically in the morning as people arrive for work or at the conclusion of a lunch-time period. Elevators are dispatched one-by-one when they reach a pre-determined passenger load, or when they have had their doors opened for a certain period of time. The next elevator to be dispatched usually has its hall lantern or a "this car leaving next" sign illuminated to encourage passengers to make maximum use of the available elevator system capacity.

The commencement of Up Peak may be triggered by a time clock
Clock
A clock is an instrument used to indicate, keep, and co-ordinate time. The word clock is derived ultimately from the Celtic words clagan and clocca meaning "bell". A silent instrument missing such a mechanism has traditionally been known as a timepiece...

, by the departure of a certain number of fully loaded cars leaving the lobby within a given time period, or by a switch manually operated by a building attendant.

Down peak


During Down Peak mode, elevator cars in a group are sent away from the lobby towards the highest floor served, after which they commence running down the floors in response to hall calls placed by passengers wishing to leave the building. This allows the elevator system to provide maximum passenger handling capacity for people leaving the building.

The commencement of Down Peak may be triggered by a time clock, by the arrival of a certain number of fully loaded cars at the lobby within a given time period, or by a switch manually operated by a building attendant.

Sabbath service (SHO)


In areas with large populations of observant Jews or in facilities catering to Jews, one may find a "Sabbath elevator
Sabbath elevator
A Shabbat elevator is an elevator which works in a special mode, operating automatically, a way to circumvent the Jewish law requiring observers to abstain from operating electric switches on Shabbat. An elevator may be marked with a sign noting that it is specially configured for Shabbat observance...

". In this mode, an elevator will stop automatically at every floor, allowing people to step on and off without having to press any buttons. This prevents violation of the Sabbath
Shabbat
Shabbat is the seventh day of the Jewish week and a day of rest in Judaism. Shabbat is observed from a few minutes before sunset on Friday evening until a few minutes after when one would expect to be able to see three stars in the sky on Saturday night. The exact times, therefore, differ from...

 prohibition against operating electrical devices when Sabbath is in effect for those who observe this ritual.

However, Sabbath mode has the side effect of wasting considerable amounts of energy, running the elevator car sequentially up and down every floor of a building, repeatedly servicing floors where it is not needed. For a tall building with many floors, the car must move on a frequent enough basis so as to not cause undue delay for potential users that will not touch the controls as it opens the doors on every floor up the building.

Independent service (ISC)


Independent service is a special service mode found on most elevators. It is activated by a key switch either inside the elevator itself or on a centralized control panel in the lobby. When an elevator is placed on independent service, it will no longer respond to hall calls. (In a bank of elevators, traffic is rerouted to the other elevators, while in a single elevator, the hall buttons are disabled). The elevator will remain parked on a floor with its doors open until a floor is selected and the door close button is held until the elevator starts to travel. Independent service is useful when transporting large goods or moving groups of people between certain floors.

Inspection service (INS)


Inspection service is designed to provide access to the hoistway and car top for inspection and maintenance purposes by qualified elevator mechanics. It is first activated by a key switch on the car operating panel usually labeled 'Inspection', 'Car Top', 'Access Enable' or 'HWENAB'. When this switch is activated the elevator will come to a stop if moving, car calls will be canceled (and the buttons disabled), and hall calls will be assigned to other elevator cars in the group (or canceled in a single elevator configuration). The elevator can now only be moved by the corresponding 'Access' key switches, usually located at the top-most (to access the top of the car) and bottom-most (to access the elevator pit) landings. The access key switches will bypass the door lock circuit for the floor it is located on and allow the car to move at reduced inspection speed with the hoistway door open. This speed can range from anywhere up to 60% of normal operating speed on most controllers, and is usually defined by local safety codes.

Elevators have a car top inspection station that allows the car to be operated by a mechanic in order to move it through the hoistway. Generally, there are three buttons - UP, RUN, and DOWN. Both the RUN and a direction button must be held to move the car in that direction, and the elevator will stop moving as soon as the buttons are released. Most other elevators have an up/down toggle switch and a RUN button. The inspection panel also has standard power outlets for work lamps and powered tools.

Fire service mode (EFS)


Depending on the location of the elevator, fire service code will vary state to state and country to country. Fire service is usually split up into two modes: Phase One and Phase Two. These are separate modes that the elevator can go into.

Phase one mode is activated by a corresponding smoke sensor or heat sensor in the building. Once an alarm has been activated, the elevator will automatically go into phase one. The elevator will wait an amount of time, then proceed to go into nudging mode to tell everyone the elevator is leaving the floor. Once the elevator has left the floor, depending on where the alarm was set off, the elevator will go to the Fire Recall Floor. However, if the alarm was activated on the fire recall floor the elevator will have an alternate floor to recall to. When the elevator is recalled, it proceeds to the recall floor and stops with its doors open. The elevator will no longer respond to calls or move in any direction. Located on the fire recall floor is a fire service key switch. The fire service key switch has the ability to turn fire service off, turn fire service on or to bypass fire service. The only way to return the elevator to normal service is to switch it to bypass after the alarms have reset.
Phase two mode can only be activated by a key switch located inside the elevator on the centralized control panel. This mode was created for firefighters so that they may rescue people from a burning building. The phase two key switch located on the COP has three positions: off, on, and hold. By turning phase two on, the firefighter enables the car to move. However, like independent service mode, the car will not respond to a car call unless the firefighter manually pushes and holds the door close button. Once the elevator gets to the desired floor it will not open its doors unless the firefighter holds the door open button. This is in case the floor is burning and the firefighter can feel the heat and knows not to open the door. The firefighter must hold door open until the door is completely opened. If for any reason the firefighter wishes to leave the elevator, they will use the hold position on the key switch to make sure the elevator remains at that floor. If the firefighter wishes to return to the recall floor, they simply turn the key off and close the doors.

Fire Service is for emergency use only, although fire service keys can be purchased on eBay, and other websites. Only trained responders should use this feature, and it is by no means a safe way to escape from a burning building.

Medical emergency/'Code Blue' service (EHS)


Commonly found in hospitals, Code Blue service allows an elevator to be summoned to any floor for use in an emergency situation. Each floor will have a 'Code Blue' recall key switch, and when activated, the elevator system will immediately select the elevator car that can respond the fastest, regardless of direction of travel and passenger load. Passengers inside the elevator will be notified with an alarm and indicator light to exit the elevator when the doors open.

Once the elevator arrives at the floor, it will park with its doors open and the car buttons will be disabled to prevent a passenger from taking control of the elevator. Medical personnel must then activate the Code Blue key switch inside the car, select their floor and close the doors with the door close button. The elevator will then travel non-stop to the selected floor, and will remain in Code Blue service until switched off in the car. Some hospital elevators will feature a 'hold' position on the Code Blue key switch (similar to fire service) which allows the elevator to remain at a floor locked out of service until Code Blue is deactivated.

Emergency power operation (EPR)


Many elevator installations now feature emergency power systems which allow elevator use in blackout situations and prevent people from becoming trapped in elevators.

Traction elevators


When power is lost in a traction elevator system, all elevators will initially come to a halt. One by one, each car in the group will return to the lobby floor, open its doors and shut down. People in the remaining elevators may see an indicator light or hear a voice announcement informing them that the elevator will return to the lobby shortly. Once all cars have successfully returned, the system will then automatically select one or more cars to be used for normal operations and these cars will return to service. The car(s) selected to run under emergency power can be manually overridden by a key or strip switch in the lobby. In order to help prevent entrapment, when the system detects that it is running low on power, it will bring the running cars to the lobby or nearest floor, open the doors and shut down.

Hydraulic elevators


In hydraulic elevator systems, emergency power will lower the elevators to the lowest landing and open the doors to allow passengers to exit. The doors then close after an adjustable time period and the car remains unusable until reset, usually by cycling the elevator main power switch. Typically, due to the high current draw when starting the pump motor, hydraulic elevators aren't run using standard emergency power systems. Buildings like hospitals and nursing homes usually size their emergency generators to accommodate this draw. However, the increasing use of current limiting motor starters, commonly known as "Soft-Start" contactors, avoid much of this problem and the current draw of the pump motor is less of a limiting concern.

Elevator convenience features




Elevators may feature talking devices as an accessibility aid for the blind. In addition to floor arrival notifications, the computer announces the direction of travel, and notifies the passengers before the doors are to close.

In addition to the call buttons, elevators usually have floor indicators (often illuminated by LED
LEd
LEd is a TeX/LaTeX editing software working under Microsoft Windows. It is a freeware product....

) and direction lanterns. The former are almost universal in cab interiors with more than two stops and may be found outside the elevators as well on one or more of the floors. Floor indicators can consist of a dial
Dial (measurement)
A dial is generally a flat surface, circular or rectangular, with numbers or similar markings on it, used for displaying the setting or output of a timepiece, radio, clock, watch, or measuring instrument...

 with a rotating needle
Measuring instrument
In the physical sciences, quality assurance, and engineering, measurement is the activity of obtaining and comparing physical quantities of real-world objects and events. Established standard objects and events are used as units, and the process of measurement gives a number relating the item...

, but the most common types are those with successively illuminated floor indications or LCDs
Liquid crystal display
A liquid crystal display is a flat panel display, electronic visual display, or video display that uses the light modulating properties of liquid crystals . LCs do not emit light directly....

. Likewise, a change of floors or an arrival at a floor is indicated by a sound, depending on the elevator.

Direction lanterns are also found both inside and outside elevator cars, but they should always be visible from outside because their primary purpose is to help people decide whether or not to get on the elevator. If somebody waiting for the elevator wants to go up, but a car comes first that indicates that it is going down, then the person may decide not to get on the elevator. If the person waits, then one will still stop going up. Direction indicators are sometimes etched with arrows or shaped like arrows and/or use the convention that one that lights up red means "down" and green means "up". Since the color convention is often undermined or overridden by systems that do not invoke it, it is usually used only in conjunction with other differentiating factors. An example of a place whose elevators use only the color convention to differentiate between directions is the Museum of Contemporary Art
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago is a contemporary art museum near Water Tower Place in downtown Chicago in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The museum, which was established in 1967, is one of the world's largest contemporary art venues...

 in Chicago, where a single circle can be made to light up green for "up" and red for "down". Sometimes directions must be inferred by the position of the indicators relative to one another.

In addition to lanterns, most elevators have a chime to indicate if the elevator is going up or down either before or after the doors open, usually in conjunction with the lanterns lighting up. Universally, one chime is for up, two is for down, and none indicates an elevator that is 'free'.

Observatory service elevators often convey other facts of interest, including elevator speed, stopwatch, and current position (altitude), as with the case for Taipei 101's service elevators.

Standards



The mechanical and electrical design of elevators is dictated according to various standards (aka elevator codes), which may be international, national, state, regional or city based. Whereas once many standards were prescriptive, specifying exact criteria which must be complied with, there has recently been a shift towards more performance-based standards where the onus falls on the designer to ensure that the elevator meets or exceeds the standard.

Some of the national elevator standards include:
  • Australia – AS1735
  • Canada – CAN/CSA B44
  • Europe – EN 81 series (EN 81-1, EN 81-2, EN 81-28, EN 81-70, EN 12015, EN 12016, EN 13015, etc.)
  • USA – ASME A17


Because an elevator is part of a building, it must also comply with standards relating to earthquake resilience, fire standards, electrical wiring rules and so forth.

The American National Elevator Standards Group (ANESG) sets an elevator weight standard to be 2200 lbs.

Additional requirements relating to access by disabled persons, may be mandated by laws or regulations such as the Americans with Disabilities Act.

US and Canadian elevator standard specifics



In most US and Canadian jurisdictions, passenger elevators are required to conform to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers' Standard A17.1, Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators. In Canada the document is the CAN/CSA B44 Safety Standard, which was harmonized with the US version in the 2000 edition. In addition, passenger elevators may be required to conform to the requirements of A17.3 for existing elevators where referenced by the local jurisdiction. Passenger elevators are tested using the ASME A17.2 Standard. The frequency of these tests is mandated by the local jurisdiction, which may be a town, city, state or provincial standard.

Passenger elevators must also conform to many ancillary building codes including the Local or State building code, National Fire Protection Association
National Fire Protection Association
The National Fire Protection Association is a United States trade association that creates and maintains private, copywrited, standards and codes for usage and adoption by local governments...

 standards for Electrical, Fire Sprinklers and Fire Alarms, Plumbing codes, and HVAC
HVAC
HVAC refers to technology of indoor or automotive environmental comfort. HVAC system design is a major subdiscipline of mechanical engineering, based on the principles of thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, and heat transfer...

 codes. Also, passenger elevators are required to conform to the Americans with Disabilities Act and other State and Federal civil rights legislation regarding accessibility.

Residential elevators are required to conform to ASME A17.1. Platform and Wheelchair lifts are required to comply with ASME A18.1 in most US jurisdictions.

Most elevators have a location in which the permit for the building owner to operate the elevator is displayed. While some jurisdictions require the permit to be displayed in the elevator cab, other jurisdictions allow for the operating permit to be kept on file elsewhere – such as the maintenance office – and to be made available for inspection on demand. In such cases instead of the permit being displayed in the elevator cab, often a notice is posted in its place informing riders of where the actual permits are kept.

World statistics

Country Number of elevators installed
Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

900,000
United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

700,000
People's Republic of China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

610,000


As of January 2008, Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 is the nation with the most elevators installed in the world, with 850,000 elevators installedANIE Federazione (Federazione Nazionale Industrie Elettrotecniche ed Elettroniche that run more than one hundred million lifts every day, followed by United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 with 700,000 elevators installed and People's Republic of China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

 with 610,000 elevators installed since 1949.China's elevator market study, 2005-2006, Publisher "Research in China" In Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

, it is estimated that there are approximately 300,000 elevators currently in operation.Atenção às normas aumenta a segurança nos elevadores (in Portuguese)Elevadores seguem alta de imóveis e do varejo (in Portuguese) The world's largest market for elevators is Italy with more than 1,629 million euros of sales and 1,224 million euros of internal market.

Eiffel Tower


The Eiffel Tower
Eiffel Tower
The Eiffel Tower is a puddle iron lattice tower located on the Champ de Mars in Paris. Built in 1889, it has become both a global icon of France and one of the most recognizable structures in the world...

 has Otis double-deck elevators built into the legs of the tower, serving the ground level to the first and second levels. Even though the shaft runs diagonally upwards with the contour of the tower, both the upper and lower cars remain horizontally level. The offset distance of the two cars changes throughout the journey.

There are four elevator cars of the traditional design that run from the second level to the third level. The cars are connected to their opposite pairs (opposite in the elevator landing/hall) and use each other as the counterweight
Counterweight
A counterweight is an equivalent counterbalancing weight that balances a load.-Uses:A counterweight is often used in traction lifts , cranes and funfair rides...

. As one car ascends from level 2, the other descends from level 3. The operations of these elevators are synchronized by a light signal in the car.

Taipei 101



Double deck elevators are used in the Taipei 101
Taipei 101
Taipei 101 , formerly known as the Taipei World Financial Center, is a landmark skyscraper located in Xinyi District, Taipei, Taiwan. The building ranked officially as the world's tallest from 2004 until the opening of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai in 2010...

 office tower. Tenants of even-numbered floors first take an escalator (or an elevator from the parking garage) to the 2nd level, where they will enter the upper deck and arrive at their floors. The lower deck is turned off during low-volume hours, and the upper deck can act as a single-level elevator stopping at all adjacent floors. For example, the 85th floor restaurants can be accessed from the 60th floor sky-lobby. Restaurant customers must clear their reservations at the reception counter on the 2nd floor. A bank of express elevators stop only on the sky lobby levels (36 and 60, upper deck car), where tenants can transfer to "local" elevators.

The high speed observation deck elevators accelerate to a world-record certified speed of 1010 meters per minute (60.6 km/h) in 16 seconds, and then it slows down for arrival with subtle air pressure sensations. The door opens after 37 seconds from the 5th floor. Special features include aerodynamic car and counterweights, and cabin pressure control to help passengers adapt smoothly to pressure changes. The downwards journey is completed at a reduced speed of 600 meters per minute, with the doors opening at the 52nd second.

The Gateway Arch



The Gateway Arch in St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis is an independent city on the eastern border of Missouri, United States. With a population of 319,294, it was the 58th-largest U.S. city at the 2010 U.S. Census. The Greater St...

 has a unique elevator system which carries passengers from the visitors' center underneath the Arch to the observation deck at the top of the structure.

Called a tram or tramway, people enter this unique tram
Tram
A tram is a passenger rail vehicle which runs on tracks along public urban streets and also sometimes on separate rights of way. It may also run between cities and/or towns , and/or partially grade separated even in the cities...

way much as one would enter an ordinary elevator, through double doors. Passing through the doors the passengers in small groups enter a horizontal cylindrical compartment containing seats on each side and a flat floor. A number of these compartments are linked to form a train. These compartments each individually retain an appropriate level orientation by tilting while the entire train follows curved tracks up one leg of the arch.

There are two tramways within the Arch, one at the north end, and the other at the south end. The entry doors have windows, so people traveling within the Arch are able to see the interior structure of the Arch during the ride to and from the observation deck. At the beginning of the trip the cars hang from the drive cables, but as the angle of the shaft changes, they end up beside and then on top of the cables.


New City Hall, Hanover, Germany


The elevator in the New City Hall
New City Hall (Hanover)
The New City Hall or New Town Hall in Hanover, Germany, is a city hall and was opened on July 20, 1913, after having been under construction for 12 years. It is a magnificent, castle-like building of the era of William II in eclectic style at the southern edge of the inner city...

 in Hanover
Hanover
Hanover or Hannover, on the river Leine, is the capital of the federal state of Lower Saxony , Germany and was once by personal union the family seat of the Hanoverian Kings of Great Britain, under their title as the dukes of Brunswick-Lüneburg...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 is a technical rarity, and unique in Europe, as the elevator starts straight up but then changes its angle by 15 degrees to follow the contour of the dome of the hall. The cabin therefore tilts 15 degrees during the ride. The elevator travels a height of 43 meters. The new city hall was built in 1913. The elevator was destroyed in 1943 and rebuilt in 1954.

Luxor Inclinator Elevator


In Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas is the most populous city in the U.S. state of Nevada and is also the county seat of Clark County, Nevada. Las Vegas is an internationally renowned major resort city for gambling, shopping, and fine dining. The city bills itself as The Entertainment Capital of the World, and is famous...

, at the Luxor Hotel
Luxor Hotel
Luxor Las Vegas is a hotel and casino located on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada. The 30-story hotel, which is operated by MGM Resorts International, features a casino floor that includes over 2,000 slot machines and 87 table games....

, is the Inclinator. The shape of this casino is a pyramid
Pyramid
A pyramid is a structure whose outer surfaces are triangular and converge at a single point. The base of a pyramid can be trilateral, quadrilateral, or any polygon shape, meaning that a pyramid has at least three triangular surfaces...

. Therefore, the elevator travels up the side of the pyramid at a 39 degree angle. Although people refer to this "inclined elevator" as an inclinator, this is incorrect.

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror


The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is the common name for a series of elevator attractions at the Disney's Hollywood Studios
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Disney's Hollywood Studios is a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort. Spanning 135 acres in size, its theme is show business, drawing inspiration from the heyday of Hollywood in the 1930s and 1940s...

 park in Orlando, the Disney's California Adventure
Disney's California Adventure
Disney California Adventure, or simply California Adventure, is a theme park in Anaheim, California, adjacent to Disneyland Park and part of the larger Disneyland Resort. It opened on February 8, 2001 as Disney's California Adventure Park. The park is owned and operated by the Walt Disney Parks and...

 park in Anaheim, the Walt Disney Studios Park
Walt Disney Studios Park
Walt Disney Studios Park is the second theme park to open at Disneyland Paris, owned and operated by Euro Disney S.C.A.. It is located to the west of the hub, next door to Disneyland Park at the heart of the resort in Marne-la-Vallée....

 in Paris and the Tokyo DisneySea
Tokyo DisneySea
is a 176-acre theme park at the Tokyo Disney Resort located in Urayasu, Chiba, Japan, just outside Tokyo. It opened on September 4, 2001. It is owned by The Oriental Land Company, which licenses the theme from The Walt Disney Company. Tokyo DisneySea attracted an estimated 12 million visitors in...

 park in Tokyo. The central element of this attraction is a simulated free-fall achieved through the use of a high-speed elevator system. For safety reasons, passengers are seated and secured in their seats rather than standing. Unlike most traction elevators, the elevator car and counterweight
Counterweight
A counterweight is an equivalent counterbalancing weight that balances a load.-Uses:A counterweight is often used in traction lifts , cranes and funfair rides...

 are joined using a rail system in a continuous loop running through both the top and the bottom of the drop shaft. This allows the drive motor to pull down on the elevator car from underneath, resulting in downward acceleration greater than that of normal gravity. The high-speed drive motor is used to rapidly lift the elevator as well.

The passenger cabs are mechanically separated from the lift mechanism, thus allowing the elevator shafts to be used continuously while passengers board and embark from the cabs. Multiple elevator shafts are used to further improve passenger throughput. The doorways of the top few "floors" of the attraction are open to the outdoor environment, thus allowing passengers to look out from the top of the structure.

"Top of the Rock" elevators


Guests ascending to the 67th, 69th, and 70th level observation decks (dubbed "Top of the Rock") atop the GE Building
GE Building
The GE Building is an Art Deco skyscraper that forms the centerpiece of Rockefeller Center in the midtown Manhattan section of New York City. Known as the RCA Building until 1988, it is most famous for housing the headquarters of the television network NBC...

 at Rockefeller Center
Rockefeller Center
Rockefeller Center is a complex of 19 commercial buildings covering between 48th and 51st streets in New York City, United States. Built by the Rockefeller family, it is located in the center of Midtown Manhattan, spanning the area between Fifth Avenue and Sixth Avenue. It was declared a National...

 in New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

 ride a high-speed glass-top elevator. When entering the cab, it appears to be any normal elevator ride. However, once the cab begins moving, the interior lights turn off and a special blue light above the cab turns on. This lights the entire shaft, so riders can see the moving cab through its glass ceiling as it rises and lowers through the shaft. Music plays and various animations are also displayed on the ceiling. The entire ride takes about 60 seconds.

The Haunted Mansion, Disneyland


Part of the Haunted Mansion
Haunted Mansion
The Haunted Mansion is a dark ride located at Disneyland, the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World and Tokyo Disneyland. A significantly re-imagined incarnation of the ride, known as Phantom Manor, is located in Disneyland Paris...

 attraction at Disneyland
Disneyland Park (Anaheim)
Disneyland Park is a theme park located in Anaheim, California, owned and operated by the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts division of the Walt Disney Company. Known as Disneyland when it opened on July 18, 1955, and still almost universally referred to by that name, it is the only theme park to be...

 in Anaheim, California
Anaheim, California
Anaheim is a city in Orange County, California. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city population was about 365,463, making it the most populated city in Orange County, the 10th most-populated city in California, and ranked 54th in the United States...

 and Disneyland
Disneyland Park (Paris)
Disneyland Park is a theme park at Disneyland Paris, a resort complex just outside of Paris, in the new town of Marne-la-Vallée, France. The first of two parks built at the resort, it opened as Euro Disneyland on 12 April, 1992...

 in Paris, France, takes place on an elevator. The "stretching room" on the ride is actually an elevator that travels downwards, giving access to a short underground tunnel which leads to the rest of the attraction. The elevator has no ceiling and its shaft is decorated to look like walls of a mansion. Because there is no roof, passengers are able to see the walls of the shaft by looking up, which gives the illusion of the room stretching. The Haunted Mansion attraction at Walt Disney World in Florida
Florida
Florida is a state in the southeastern United States, located on the nation's Atlantic and Gulf coasts. It is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Mexico, to the north by Alabama and Georgia and to the east by the Atlantic Ocean. With a population of 18,801,310 as measured by the 2010 census, it...

 does not feature this, rather it gives you the illusion it is moving while it remains stationary.

Elevators for urban transport


In some towns where terrain is difficult to navigate, elevators are used as part of urban transport systems.

Examples:
  • Almada
    Almada
    Almada is a municipality in Portugal, covering an area of 70.2 km² located on the southern margin of the Tagus River. Its municipal population in 2008 was 164,844 inhabitants; the urbanized center had a population of 102,357.The seat is the city of Almada....

    , Portugal: Elevador da Boca do Vento
  • Asansor
    Asansör
    Asansör is a historical building in İzmir's Karataş quarter, within the boundaries of the metropolitan district of Konak...

    , Izmir, Turkey
  • Ascensores de Valparaíso, urban funicular
    Funicular
    A funicular, also known as an inclined plane or cliff railway, is a cable railway in which a cable attached to a pair of tram-like vehicles on rails moves them up and down a steep slope; the ascending and descending vehicles counterbalance each other.-Operation:The basic principle of funicular...

     in Valparaíso, Chile
  • Bad Schandau Elevator
    Bad Schandau Elevator
    The Bad Schandau elevator is a passenger truss-tower elevator built in 1904 at Bad Schandau, which runs from Bad Schandau on the Ostrau. The height of the elevator is 52.26 m, in art nouveau arranged steel framework tower upward, which has a diameter of 5.20 m at the ground and at the...

     in Bad Schandau
    Bad Schandau
    Bad Schandau is a spa town in Germany, in the south of the Free State of Saxony and the district of Sächsische Schweiz-Osterzgebirge. It is situated on the right bank of the Elbe, at the mouth of the little valley of the Kirnitzsch.-Geography:...

    , Germany
  • Barcelona
    Barcelona
    Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain after Madrid, and the capital of Catalonia, with a population of 1,621,537 within its administrative limits on a land area of...

    , Spain - Elevator and cableway line connecting the port terminal to Montjuic hill
  • Bilbao
    Bilbao
    Bilbao ) is a Spanish municipality, capital of the province of Biscay, in the autonomous community of the Basque Country. With a population of 353,187 , it is the largest city of its autonomous community and the tenth largest in Spain...

     - Casco Viejo Bilbao Metro station (fare-paying elevator connecting upper and lower neighbourhoods, as well as the station)
  • Brussels
    Brussels
    Brussels , officially the Brussels Region or Brussels-Capital Region , is the capital of Belgium and the de facto capital of the European Union...

     - Marolles
    Marollen
    Marolles or Marollen is an ancient district of Brussels, situated between the Law Courts of Brussels and the Brussels-South railway station. In the heart of Marollen can be found the Église de la Chapelle/Kapellekerk and the Place du Jeu de balle/Vossenplein...

    , Belgium: "Ascenseur des Marolles", links the upper part of the city to the lower one, from Place Poelaert to Breughel square.
  • Coimbra
    Coimbra
    Coimbra is a city in the municipality of Coimbra in Portugal. Although it served as the nation's capital during the High Middle Ages, it is better-known for its university, the University of Coimbra, which is one of the oldest in Europe and the oldest academic institution in the...

    , Portugal: Elevador do Mercado
  • East Hill Cliff Railway
    East Hill Cliff Railway
    East Hill Cliff Railway, or East Hill Lift, is a funicular railway located in the English seaside town of Hastings. It provides access to Hastings Country Park via the East Hill, which overlooks the Old Town and Rock-a-Nore, an area to the east of Hastings...

    , Hastings
    Hastings
    Hastings is a town and borough in the county of East Sussex on the south coast of England. The town is located east of the county town of Lewes and south east of London, and has an estimated population of 86,900....

    , UK
  • Genoa
    Genoa
    Genoa |Ligurian]] Zena ; Latin and, archaically, English Genua) is a city and an important seaport in northern Italy, the capital of the Province of Genoa and of the region of Liguria....

    , Italy - eleven public elevators
  • Hammetschwand Elevator
    Hammetschwand Elevator
    The Hammetschwand Lift is the highest exterior elevator of Europe and is located in Switzerland. It connects a spectacular rock path with the lookout point Hammetschwand on the Bürgenstock plateau overlooking Lake Lucerne.-History:...

     in Bürgenstock
    Bürgenstock
    The Bürgenstock is a mountain above the Lake Lucerne in Switzerland. It is a very famous viewpoint because the mountain is almost completely surrounded by the lake and the summit is accessible by the Hammetschwand Elevator.- External links :*...

    , Switzerland
  • Jersey City, New Jersey
    New Jersey
    New Jersey is a state in the Northeastern and Middle Atlantic regions of the United States. , its population was 8,791,894. It is bordered on the north and east by the state of New York, on the southeast and south by the Atlantic Ocean, on the west by Pennsylvania and on the southwest by Delaware...

     elevator at Bergen Hudson Light Rail station at 9th Street and Palisade Avenue.
  • Katarina Elevator
    Katarina Elevator
    The Katarina Elevator is a passenger elevator in Stockholm that connects Slussen to the heights of Södermalm. The original elevator was constructed in 1881, but the current structure dates from the rebuilding of the Slussen transport interchange in 1935.-References:...

     in Stockholm
    Stockholm
    Stockholm is the capital and the largest city of Sweden and constitutes the most populated urban area in Scandinavia. Stockholm is the most populous city in Sweden, with a population of 851,155 in the municipality , 1.37 million in the urban area , and around 2.1 million in the metropolitan area...

    , Sweden
  • Lisbon
    Lisbon
    Lisbon is the capital city and largest city of Portugal with a population of 545,245 within its administrative limits on a land area of . The urban area of Lisbon extends beyond the administrative city limits with a population of 3 million on an area of , making it the 9th most populous urban...

    , Portugal: Elevador de Santa Justa
    Santa Justa Lift
    The Santa Justa Lift , also called Carmo Lift , is a elevator/lift in civil parish of Santa Justa, in the historical city of Lisbon, situated at the end of Rua de Santa Justa...

    , Castelo (planned), Chiado (closed), Município/Biblioteca (demolished)
  • Luxembourg
    Luxembourg
    Luxembourg , officially the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg , is a landlocked country in western Europe, bordered by Belgium, France, and Germany. It has two principal regions: the Oesling in the North as part of the Ardennes massif, and the Gutland in the south...

  • Lynchburg
    Lynchburg
    Lynchburg or Lynchburgh may refer to:*Lynchburg, California*Lynchburg, Mississippi*Lynchburg, Missouri*Lynchburg, Ohio*Lynchburg, South Carolina*Lynchburg, Tennessee*Lynchburg, Texas*Lynchburg, Virginia...

    , Virginia
    Virginia
    The Commonwealth of Virginia , is a U.S. state on the Atlantic Coast of the Southern United States. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" and sometimes the "Mother of Presidents" after the eight U.S. presidents born there...

     - Outdoor Public elevator

  • Marburg
    Marburg
    Marburg is a city in the state of Hesse, Germany, on the River Lahn. It is the main town of the Marburg-Biedenkopf district and its population, as of March 2010, was 79,911.- Founding and early history :...

    , Germany - some parts of the historic city core built on higher ground (Uppertown, "Oberstadt" in German) are accessible from the lower street level by elevators. These elevators are unique in servicing also various buildings partially embedded in the steep-sloping terrain.
  • Monaco
    Monaco
    Monaco , officially the Principality of Monaco , is a sovereign city state on the French Riviera. It is bordered on three sides by its neighbour, France, and its centre is about from Italy. Its area is with a population of 35,986 as of 2011 and is the most densely populated country in the...

    , seven elevators
  • Naples
    Naples
    Naples is a city in Southern Italy, situated on the country's west coast by the Gulf of Naples. Lying between two notable volcanic regions, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields, it is the capital of the region of Campania and of the province of Naples...

    , Italy - three public elevators
  • Oporto, Portugal: Elevador da Ribeira
  • Oregon City Municipal Elevator
    Oregon City Municipal Elevator
    The Oregon City Municipal Elevator is a elevator which connects two neighborhoods in Oregon City in the U.S. state of Oregon. It is the only outdoor municipal elevator in the US and one of only four in the world...

     in Oregon City, Oregon
    Oregon City, Oregon
    Oregon City was the first city in the United States west of the Rocky Mountains to be incorporated. It is the county seat of Clackamas County, Oregon...

    , United States
  • Salvador, Bahia
    Salvador, Bahia
    Salvador is the largest city on the northeast coast of Brazil and the capital of the Northeastern Brazilian state of Bahia. Salvador is also known as Brazil's capital of happiness due to its easygoing population and countless popular outdoor parties, including its street carnival. The first...

    , Brazil: Elevador Lacerda
  • Santa Justa Lift
    Santa Justa Lift
    The Santa Justa Lift , also called Carmo Lift , is a elevator/lift in civil parish of Santa Justa, in the historical city of Lisbon, situated at the end of Rua de Santa Justa...

     in Lisbon
    Lisbon
    Lisbon is the capital city and largest city of Portugal with a population of 545,245 within its administrative limits on a land area of . The urban area of Lisbon extends beyond the administrative city limits with a population of 3 million on an area of , making it the 9th most populous urban...

    , Portugal
  • Savannah, Georgia
    Savannah, Georgia
    Savannah is the largest city and the county seat of Chatham County, in the U.S. state of Georgia. Established in 1733, the city of Savannah was the colonial capital of the Province of Georgia and later the first state capital of Georgia. Today Savannah is an industrial center and an important...

    : Public elevators with access to River Street.
  • Shanklin Cliff Lift in Shanklin
    Shanklin
    Shanklin is a popular seaside resort and civil parish on the Isle of Wight, England, located on the east coast's Sandown Bay. The sandy beach, its Old Village and a wooded ravine, Shanklin Chine, are its main attractions. The esplanade along the beach is occupied by hotels and restaurants for the...

    , Isle of Wight
    Isle of Wight
    The Isle of Wight is a county and the largest island of England, located in the English Channel, on average about 2–4 miles off the south coast of the county of Hampshire, separated from the mainland by a strait called the Solent...

  • Skyway
    Skyway
    In an urban setting, a skyway, catwalk, sky bridge, or skywalk is a type of pedway consisting of an enclosed or covered bridge between two buildings. This protects pedestrians from the weather. These skyways are usually owned by businesses, and are therefore not public spaces...

     in Nagasaki, Japan
  • Yalta
    Yalta
    Yalta is a city in Crimea, southern Ukraine, on the north coast of the Black Sea.The city is located on the site of an ancient Greek colony, said to have been founded by Greek sailors who were looking for a safe shore on which to land. It is situated on a deep bay facing south towards the Black...

    , Ukraine

External links