ThyssenKrupp elevators could revolutionise urbanisation

Germany’s ThyssenKrupp has developed the world’s first rope-free elevator system. Unconstrained by a building’s height, the revolutionary technology will make it easier to build upwards and more densely to accommodate the hundreds of millions of people moving into cities.

Called the MULTI, the new elevators are powered by magnetic levitation motors, which allow multiple cabins to move along vertically in the elevator shaft in a running loop. ThyssenKrupp describes it as a vertical metro system in which cabins travelling at 5 metres/second pick up passengers every 15 to 30 seconds. The system even allows the cabins to move horizontally, transforming how people move inside buildings.

ThyssenKrupp calls the new technology “a landmark revolution in the elevator industry and a new and efficient transport solution for mid and high-rise buildings”. The MULTI design increases shaft transport capacity by up to 50 per cent, slashing the elevator footprint in buildings in half. The increase in efficiency leads to construction cost savings and increases rent revenues from increased usable space.

As the MULTI is not constrained by a building’s height, architects and developers are free to design buildings they have never imagined possible – and higher than possible. Calling urbanisation an “unstoppable trend”, ThyssenKrupp believes the MULTI has a crucial role to play as cities grow upwards and more densely to accommodate the mass migration of people into cities all over the world.

The first MULTI unit will be in tests by 2016.


Photo credit: ThyssenKrupp

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