How Does an Elevator Work
Written by webtechs

How Does an Elevator Work?

Elevator installation is a developing business, yet change is in the works as office space and energy cost increase. A lot of buildings taller than 4 stories make use of traction elevators. A motor located at the top of the shaft rotates a sheave—basically a pulley—that lowers and raises cables connected to the elevators cab and its counterweight. Gears attach the motor and sheave in slower elevators. Faster elevators have no gears; the sheave is directly coupled.

Nonetheless, the machinery usually packs an entire room above or on the side of the top of the shaft, taking over what might be excellent penthouse space. But developments are enabling builders to stuff the equipment into the head of the shaft or beside a side wall. Many companies are utilizing permanent magnet gearless motors, that are smaller than conventional designs but have grown to be just as strong.

Having said that, today’s manufacturers are taking advantage of gravity for energy savings. A counterweight selected to weigh about the same as a cab with 40% to 45% of a full load reduces the motor output required. However, if an empty elevator needs go up, the heftier counterweight’s fall gives too much energy; enormous resistors disperse the leftover energy as heat. The equal resistance is required when a full cab (heftier than the counterweight) is going down. Newer regenerative drives, nevertheless, turns the dissipated energy into electricity. The energy then gets fed back into the building’s electrical system for re-use.

Advanced dispatch technology is raising human efficiency in buildings that have multiple shafts. Office buildings are stuffing more people into floors that already exist; however, the increased populace may slow elevator service. For compensation, installers are switching the “up” and “down” buttons in lobby’s with display screens that are numbered or touchpads. Potential passengers push the floor number that they want, then a computer informs them which elevator to get on, putting people in groups going to the same or adjacent floors. The computer dispatches the elevators so that each one goes to a small set of neighboring floors, rather than randomly going far upwards and downwards. The system decreases wait times and energy use.


  1. Fischetti, M. (2009, January 01). New Designs Going Up-Working Knowledge on Elevators. Retrieved September 18, 2020, from

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