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Recent Articles

Yes, you read that right. I assert we will need to miniaturize our products’ burden on buildings while having bigger experiences and faster delivery times which requires stronger materials. 

Remember Ironman’s super-cool digital screens inside his ocean-side lair? Well today, thyssenkrupp announced that our service technicians will use HoloLens technology in its elevator service operations worldwide.

There is no getting around it. If your building is two stories or hundreds of feet, you are going to need an elevator. You have to meet the American Disabilities Act codes but what you don’t need is a complicated elevator system to travel just a few feet.

The term “smart city” can be open to interpretation. Here are a few prerequisites established a few years ago.  A smart city uses technologies to be more intelligent and efficient when using resources.

thyssenkrupp is currently putting the finishing touches on the installation of 30 elevators and 2 escalators that will serve 52 floors at River Point, a new office tower located on a prime piece of property overlooking the Chicago River.

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Wouldn’t it be cool if we could travel around in a vacuum tube like cash at a bank drive-thru? Well Elon Musk (engineer and founder of PayPal, Space X, Tesla and SolarCity) seems to think it’s not a bad idea. Actually he put together a thorough plan describing, in detail, its technical viability and named this concept: Hyperloop. The fundamental premise is that a pod containing a group of people can travel faster than the speed of sound (approximately two times the speed of most jetliners) a relatively short distance off of the ground for medium distances (a few hundred miles...no restrooms). This shines some light on the question: What does the future of transportation look like?

Just last week, Patrick Bass, chief executive officer of thyssenkrupp North America said,  "Instead of being an elevator company, we're a transportation company, " in an article on innovations in the elevator industry published in the Harford Courant. His statements were in reference to the company’s response to the trend, urbanization. That is, the tendency of populations to gravitate towards city centers. Small towns are becoming less populated while big cities are growing at a record pace. So how do we find an infrastructure to support the efficient movement of everyone…and everything for that matter?

Let’s get back to the bank tube. The technology required to support such a highly technical mode of transportation has long been out of the grasp of economic viability. The research and prototyping alone made the product too high of a risk. But today, using virtual 3D simulation (which is arguably the most powerful tool engineers have at their disposal) we can iterate through thousands of scenarios prior to ever building a physical prototype. This massive computational power is largely to credit for the futuristic modes of transportation we are undertaking. This includes, of course, the futuristic thyssenkrupp elevator, the MULTI which is being developed right now.

So the long-trip mass transit horizontal solution can deliver people to our mass transit vertical solution, but what about the short trip horizontal solution?  Enter the self-driving cars of today and tomorrow.  We are already seeing the testing of self-driving solutions in some states and automotive manufacturers are ramping up their product offering. There was even a report of a three- unit convoy of self-driving semi-trucks traversing Germany.

Now that we can combine grand transportation challenges, great engineering minds and powerful software it will be up to the building owners and city planners to seamlessly incorporate the technologies into one harmonious system. Living in Nebraska, I certainly appreciate tranquility and amazing steaks. Problem is my favorite burger joint is in Chicago. Maybe someday soon it'll only be a 45 minute hyperloop ride away!

Until next time

-Michael


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