If you've ever dreamed of an elevator that can go horizontally, you need more hobbies. Just kidding. But seriously. A German steel and engineering company has unveiled plans for what it described as the elevator industry's "holy grail": a ropless elevator.
ThyssenKrupp has created a new type of elevator system that doesn't use ropes or steel cables, and because of this technological feat, elevators from the pages of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory or Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator might one day be possible. The new system is called Multi, and it'll go into testing in 2016. Watch the video below to learn more about the system and what ThyssenKrupp envisions for it.
The idea is that Multi could loosen constraits on architectects by allowing them the freedom to dream up city skyscrapers with unqiue designs. They currently aren't able to do that, or at least not practically, because they're stuck having to implement a 100-year-old elevator system that only allows for vertical transportation of people. Imagine however if a building could have multiple elevators travelling in a circular route.
Sort of like a subway line, Multi would include multiple elevators - all within the same shaft - going round and round and travelling horizontally. The elevators will have their own mechanical drive too, thanks to magnetic levitation (maglev) technology, eliminating the need for ropes and steel cables. In the end, Multi could increase transit speed for people and take up less of a building's total footprint.
But the coolest aspect about Multi is that it'll help architectects fill our cities with futuristic-looking buildings.