The German company ThyssenKrupp Elevator have announced that they have been developing a new rope-less elevator system called MULTI which uses Maglev technology for propulsion. With no cables to get in the way multiple cabins can operate in the same shaft. According to the press release the new design operates in a manner similar to metro systems, the MULTI design can incorporate several self-propelled elevator cabins per shaft running in a loop, increasing the shaft transport capacity by up to 50% making it possible to reduce the elevator footprint in buildings by as much as 50%. It employs a multi-level braking system and transfers power inductively from a shaft to the cabin so the system can also make use of horizontal shafts
The CEO at ThyssenKrupp Andreas Schierenbeck said that "Per year in New York City alone, office workers spend a cumulative total of 16.6 years waiting for elevators, and 5.9 years in the elevators. This information shows how imperative it is to increase the availability of elevators." Operating on the basic premise of a circular system, such as a paternoster, MULTI consists of various cabins running in a loop at a targeted speed of 5 m/s, enabling passengers to have near-constant access to an elevator cabin every 15 to 30 seconds, with a transfer stop every 50 metres.
“To get this groundbreaking product onto the market our new test tower in Rottweil, Germany will provide 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”, Schierenbeck adds. The price of the new system has so far not been released.