My following article below was originally published by SERIOUS WONDER:
Whether you’re a Trekkie like me or a fan of the original Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, there is one thing which brings us together: our absolute fascination of their elevator systems! These elevators weren’t your normal elevator, going up and down by cable, but were capable of going horizontal as well. For Willy Wonka, they could even fly, but for now let’s stick with Star Trek‘s elevators.
For German multinational conglomerate corporation ThyssenKrupp, the elevator which goes both vertical and horizontal wasn’t simply a Trekkie’s dream, but a business opportunity that can be achieved via modern science and technology. As a result, came the development of MULTI!
“As the nature of building constructions evolve, it is also necessary to adapt elevator systems to better suit the requirements of buildings and high volumes of passengers. From the one dimensional vertical arrangement to a two dimensional horizontal/vertical arrangement with more than one or two cabins operating in each shaft, MULTI represents a proud moment in ThyssenKrupp’s history of presenting cutting-edge transport technologies that best serve current mobility needs.”
– Andreas Schierenbeck, CEO of ThyssenKrupp
According to ThyssenKrupp’s CEO Andreas Schierenbeck, office workers spend a cumulative amount of 5.9 years in elevators in New York alone, which is on account of how slow and few in availability they are. In response, ThyssenKrupp’s MULTI elevator technologies is based off their TWIN’s control system, which is cable-free and self-propels itself using inductive power transfers and a multi-level brake system. In regards to efficiency, it runs in a loop which results in a 50% increase in transport capacity and 50% reduction of the elevator footprint in buildings. ThyssenKrupp plans on testing out the MULTI with their new test tower, which is still in construction.
“To get this groundbreaking product onto the market our new test tower in Rottweil, Germany, provides the perfect test and certification environment. The tower is set to be completed at the end of 2016, and by this time, we aim to have a running prototype of MULTI.” – Andreas Schierenbeck
To test out the design structure of MULTI, given that their test tower is yet to be completed itself, ThyssenKrupp was able to use the University of Stuttgart’s 3D Cave to give them a virtual hands-on look of the design and how it’ll work. It’s quite amazing to think about, that in just over a year there’ll be a new elevator system that mimics great science-fiction of the past, like Star Trek, and was achieved by being optimized firstly as a 3D virtual hologram!
The implications to such a design and design process is practically limitless. For office workers, I’m sure they’ll be more than appreciative of a fast and abundant elevator system. For engineers and architects, however, the ability to test their designs in 3D virtual space before actual construction will surely maximize efficiency in both resource use and design capability.