world’s first rope-free elevator MULTI moves vertically & horizontally
images courtesy of thyssenkrupp




thyssenkrupp develops ‘multi’, the world’s first rope-free elevator system which moves cabins vertically and horizontally in a perpendicular metro-like structure. enabling linear motors to lift compartments prepares the building industry with the challenge faced by global urbanization because the technology permits tower constructions of different heights, shapes and purposes. using no cables and just a multi-level brake set-up, inductive power transfers from the shaft to the box to provide the needed propulsion. the first ‘MULTI’ unit will be in trial by 2016, in the company’s test tower in rottweil, germany.



MULTI- the world’s first rope-free elevator system
videos courtesy of thyssenkrupp




andreas schierenbeck, CEO of thyssenkrupp elevator AG said, ‘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’.


animation of how the system acts similarly to a railway network



applying the linear motor technology of the magnetic levitation train transrapid to the elevator industry means it will operate in a similar manner to a metro system as ‘MULTI’ incorporates various cabins per shaft, running in a loop. it aims to increase the tube transport capacity by up to 50% with a continuous flow speed of 5m/s and cabin arrivals every 15-30 seconds, whilst offering significant extra space to the architects as the compartments won’t need to be as big. current elevator-escalator footprints can occupy up to 40% of a building’s floor space meaning constructions ideally above 300m in height, will have new design possibilities.

a 3D visualization of the ‘MULTI’ cave




schierenbeck said, ‘per year, new york city office workers spend a cumulative amount of 16.6 years waiting for elevators, and 5.9 years in the elevators. this data provides how imperative it is to increase the availability of elevators.’


‘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’, schierenbeck adds.

rendering of a proposed test tower in rottweil, germany