Modern building design is constrained by what elevators can do. This new elevator design, to be tested in 2016, has no cables and uses induction power transfers from shaft to cabin. Multiple cabins can be one shaft and the cabins can move horizontally as well as vertically. Elevator shafts are smaller than with traditional elevators. Construction costs drop. Floor space is freed up for other purposes. Building design can now change significantly.
This design is from ThyssenKrupp, a German industrial giant with 160,000 employees and could be a game changer.
The era of the rope-dependent elevator is now over, 160 years after its invention. ThyssenKrupp places linear motors in elevator cabins, transforming conventional elevator transportation in vertical metro systems. MULTI elevator technology increases transport capacities and efficiency while reducing the elevator footprint and peak loads from the power supply in buildings. Several cabins in the same shaft moving vertically and horizontally will permit buildings to adopt different heights, shapes, and purposes. The first MULTI unit will be in tests by 2016.
Building design will no longer be limited by the height or vertical alignment of elevator shafts, opening possibilities to architects and building developers they have never imagined possible.
This elevator would be propelled by a magnet-based drive, with each cab featuring one set of induction motors for horizontal and vertical movement. The tracks along which these cabs would run, would be attached to the wall, eliminating the need for cables. Furthermore, because of this novel design, there could be more than one cab travelling through the shaft, meaning that a cab could pick up passengers every 15 to 30 seconds. This would mean smaller and slower elevators, which would still get you to your destination faster.