Cutting-edge Maglev elevators look like something straight out of science fiction

Contributed by
Dec 16, 2014

We’ve accomplished a lot with technology over the past 150 years, but one vintage technology in desperate need of a refresh is the elevator. Enter Maglev tech.

Popular Science notes that German automotive tech firm ThyssenKrupp has developed an elevator system called Multi, which replaces the tried-and-true cables with magnetic levitation (Maglev) technology. The best part? That means these new elevators can go left, right, up, down and just about any direction you can imagine.

To put it simply: Maglev vehicles “float” with the use of magnets, using opposite sides on the track and cart (in this case, elevator) to repel and levitate the craft above the track. With that established, the elevators can be pulled around by the magnetic field embedded in the walls/tracks.

The concept of Maglev tech has been around a while, though it's mostly been pitched for high-speed trains, etc. — and there are only two commercial Maglev trains in use worldwide. Embedding them in buildings for elevators is a new idea, and the company thinks it could have a ton of benefits: multiple cars on the same track, which would make things a whole lot faster, and it’d cut down on wait times.

As buildings get bigger and bigger, more and more space is required to accommodate elevator shafts inside. But with Maglev you’d only need one track — just add more cars as needed. Plus, c’mon, it just looks extremely cool. Science!

(Via Popular Science)