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A mechanical device for transporting people or goods from one level to another.

The term lift or

elevator generally denotes a unit with automatic safety devices; the very earliest units were called
hoists. Lifts consist of a platform(cabin) or car travelling in vertical guides in a shaft, with related
hoisting and lowering mechanisms and a source of power.

Components of a Lift System

Guide Rails: protects the cabin and the counter weight along the vertical

direction and, it prevents any turning of cabin and counter weight. All rails

are used by the parachute aarangement to hold the cabin. Generally Tprofile

steel are used for guide rails.

Counter Weight: The weight of the counter weight is equal to the cabin

weight and 0.4 or 0.5 of the whole weight. To be able to carry it easily and

to arrange the required amount, it is made with cast iron.

Buffer or Bumper : In any case if an elevator can not stop at the lowest

stop and continue on its way, to soften the crash to the ground and to

reduce the damage that may occur, according to the speed of the elevator,

wooden, plastic, spring, or hydraulic elements known as bumpers are used.

Speed regulator : If the downward speed exceeds the normal speed by

%25, speed regulator effects the parachute brake and shuts off the

electricity of the motor. It acts like speed limit.

Parachute system : This system stops the elevator on guide rails with

breaking, if ropes are broken or if the speed of going down is increased too

much. It gets signals from a speed regulator.

Electricity arrangement : In the Machinery room on a panel there is a

circuit breaker and fuses. Many circuits are installed to start the electric

motor, to loosen the automatic breakes, lightining, security and control.

Control System : To be able to use the elevators easily, comfortably,

orderly and securely, control systems are installed. For modern elevators,

button control are used. Button control are divided into two. Buttons

outside the cabin are external and buttons in side the cabin are internal

control buttons.

Ropes or Cables : Ropes are produced from high carbon cold drawn

wires. Wires are wraped up in helix way to create cordons, and cordons are
wraped up in helix way to create ropes.

Cabin Doors : Cabin doors can be seperated in three according to their

operation as follows :

1. Slam-doors opened and closed by hand

2. Semi-automatic doors closed with the help of shock absorbers

3. Full-automatic doors operate by electric motors

Stop or Floor Doors : These should be fixed to the openings, which

allows entries to the elevators. They are fire resistant.

Ventilation : There could be proper ventilation in cabins and in the

Machine room.

Elevator Car and Shaft

The elevator car holds people and objects for transport and is
encased in the elevator shaft. Elevator cars can be of various sizes have
at least one door and are pulled up and down using a motor or a hydraulic
system. Motorized elevators are the most common and offer the best
value for building construction. Elevator shafts also contain guide tracks
for the elevator itself as well as the counterweight, both of which help
reduce strain on the elevator motor.

The Sheave and Motor

Motorized elevators are raised and lowered using steel ropes that
are attached to the elevator car as well as a counterweight. The counter
simulates the weight of the elevator car at 40 percent capacity in order to
help reduce the overall strain on the motor. The sheave is simply a pulley
that has groves and moves the rope to lift and lower the elevator. The
motor moves the sheave in the direction that the elevator needs to go in
to move passengers up and down.

Control Unit
The control unit is housed with both the motor and the sheave in the
control room, usually located above the elevator shaft. It receives the
signal from each floor's controls and translates that to movements for the
motor, either up or down. When the elevator car reaches its destination,
the control receives a signal to stop the elevator car to allow passengers
to enter or exit. The control unit also has a computer built-in to monitor
travel patterns and specific instructions that are programmed into it for
rest locations and signal priorities.
Counterweight and Guide Rails
The counterweight is used to reduce strain on the motor as it
creates constant energy that can be used to lift or lower the elevator car
similar to the action of a children's seesaw. The motor uses the
counterweight or the elevator car to propel the elevator car in either
direction. The guide rails are in place for both the elevator car and
counterweight to keep them from swaying --- thereby creating a smooth
elevator ride in either direction.

Traction Drive/Roping System

A roping system is used to attach the motor/gear reducer, the elevator car
and the counter weight. There are many different kinds of arrangements that
can be used. In one possible arrangement, such as shown in Figure 2, both
ends of the elevator rope are anchored to the overhead beam. Both the
elevator car and the counter weight are attached to free moving pulleys. The
traction drive is attached to a stationary pulley.

The traction drive is the method of converting the input mechanical power
(in this case the turning of a shaft) into useable mechanical power in the
system (the vertical movement of the elevator). The friction between the
ropes and the sheave grooves, which are cut on the pulley, initiates the
traction force between the traction drive and the rope.

When the traction drive is rotated power is transferred from the traction
drive to the elevator car and counter weight. Power is only needed to move
the unbalanced load between the elevator and the counterweight.


An elevator's function is to convert the initial electrical power, which runs

the motor, into mechanical power, which can be used by the system. The
elevator is composed of a motor and, most commonly, a worm gear reducer
system. A worm gear system is made up of a worm gear, typically called the
worm, and a larger round gear, typically called the worm gear. These two
gears which have rotational axes perpendicular to each other, not only
decrease the rotational speed of the traction pulley (1), but also change the
plane of rotation. By decreasing the rotation speed, with the use of a gear
reducer, we are also increasing the output torque, therefore, having the
ability to lift larger objects for a given pulley diameter. A worm gear is
chosen over other types of gearing possibilities because of its compactness
and its ability to withstand higher shock loads. It is also easily attached to
the motor shaft, sometimes through use of a coupling. The gear reduction
ratios typically vary between 12:1 and 30:1.
The motor component of the elevator machine can be either a DC motor or
an AC motor. A DC motor had a good starting torque and ease of speed
control. An AC motor is more regularly used because of its ruggedness and
simplicity. A motor is chosen depending on design intent for the elevator.
Power required to start the car in motion is equal to the power to overcome
static, or stationary friction, and to accelerate the mass from rest to full
speed. Considerations that must be included in the choice of an acceptable
motor are good speed regulation and good starting torque. In addition,
heating of various electrical components in continuous service should not be


The most common elevator brake is made up of a compressive spring

assembly, brake shoes with linings, and a solenoid assembly. When the
solenoid is not energized, the spring forces the brake shoes to grip the brake
drum and induce a braking torque. The magnet can exert a horizontal force
for the break release. This can be done directly on one of the operating arms
or through a linkage system. In either case, the result is the same. The break
is pulled away from the shaft and the velocity of the elevator is resumed.

In order to improve the stopping ability, a material with a high coefficient of

friction is used within the breaks, such as zinc bonded asbestos. A material
with too high a coefficient of friction can result in a jerky motion of the car.
This material must be chosen carefully.