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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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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.

There are just two basic categories of elevators and the type you choose impacts cost, space, performance, building design and sustainability. Traction elevators move when hoist ropes pass over a driving machine that raise and lower the car. The ropes that lift the cab are also connected to a counterweight and they run on load-bearing rails installed in the shaft. Hydraulic elevators operate by forcing pressurized fluid through a valve into a steel cylinder located above or below ground. The fluid – which is normally petroleum- based - is stored in tightly-sealed pump units that reside at the bottom of the hoist way or underground.

The National Elevator Industry Inc. recommends hydraulic elevators should be used in two to five floor buildings. Manufacturers, on the other hand, have developed traction elevators for the job. Traction elevators save energy and don’t require hydraulic fluid. Plus you don’t have to build a mechanical room to store the components that operate the elevator. But those advantages may not pay off in a low-rise building, so let’s compare.

Let's consider the costs  

Hydraulic elevators cost less than traction. They also cost less to maintain – in some cases up to $100K less –over the life of an elevator. Hydraulic elevators have fewer moving parts and can traditionally lift larger loads. But most need a mechanical room which uses up leasable space. So there will be added construction costs. Plus the rooms use up leasable space and building owners have to heat  and cool them which leads to higher operational costs

Traction elevators are more expensive and cost more to maintain. The major components fit in the elevator hoist way and do not always require a machine room. The controller can be installed in a cabinet or closet that must be adjacent to the elevator hoist way. So even if you don’t have to build a machine room, you do have to leave access to the controller for service technicians.

Let’s talk about sustainability and energy use.

Hydraulic elevators use petroleum – based hydraulic fluid.  It is rare that it can leak from the pump unit, but if it does, the cleanup costs are high. thyssenkrupp has developed a biodegradable alternative. These 100- percent recyclable fluids also perform better in extreme climates and can eliminate the need for energy-wasting heaters or coolers needed to stop lubricants from breaking down.  

Regenerative drives can be used with traction elevators. They capture the power generated by the elevator braking system and feed it back into the buildings’ electrical grid.  But the motor used to operate an elevator in a low-rise building is fairly small and the amount of energy it would generate would likely be negligible.

Elevators in low-rise buildings use energy, but not that much. For example, a 2,500 lb. traction elevator traveling a single floor (12 feet) at 100 fpm (feet per minute), that operates 100 runs a day, uses $600 worth of energy in an entire year. A similar hydraulic elevator carrying the same load and traveling the same distance and speed would cost just $150 more to operate.

How about a simplified alternative?

 

 

 

But before you make your choice, consider the endura MRL. It combines the no-nonsense functionality of hydraulics and a truly machine room-less design that is intended specifically for low-rise buildings. It saves building space, takes less effort and cost to install and saves thousands of dollars on elevator operations over the product’s life. Compared with hydraulic solutions, the endura MRL uses petroleum-free hydraulic fluid has no machine room to construct and requires less installation coordination. The endura MRL’s components are tucked neatly into the space already occupied by the elevator. So there is no need to design, construct or maintain a machine room or restrict the use of space that provides access to a controller closet.

It simply fits. 


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