The recent history of the test tower for elevators, ie towers built in the last decade of XX century and the first decade of the XXI century, follows the pattern of previous decades and illustrates the global nature of lift building industry.
He is PhD in architectural history from Cornell University, a member of the South-Eastern branch of the Society for Historians arhitektury.org open magazine «Elevator World».
Research and testing tower last twenty years, has an interesting architectural solutions, it had quickly become a local landmark, and their increased height reflects the need for elevators that could meet the demands of modern skyscrapers. In this final article gives a brief overview of the towers built over the last 20 years. On many of them have already been described in journals «Elevator World» and «EWIndia». The fact that five of the seven towers under consideration or in Asia or Asian companies were built, says the growth Lift industry in the Far East and that Asia remains the focus of the design of skyscrapers and innovations in this field. In addition to these research and testing towers, we consider two European research facilities. Moreover, we see that only one of them meet the regulatory definition of «research tower.»
In 2006, Cedes AG has completed construction of its new complex with headquarters in Landquart, Switzerland. One of the key structures of the new complex has a 60-meter test tower. The interior corresponds to the requirements of modern research lab — the tower is one of the «most modern, high-tech and high-speed elevators in Switzerland.» And the appearance of the tower was supposed to be a symbol of the corporation. Tower designed the company Kuchel Architects AG: construction consists of a 50-meter-thin cylindrical shaft entwined exterior spiral staircase, «drum» height of 10 m and the company name height of 2.5 m. Front drum «made a polished diamond» whose faces shine on sun. The company Cedes developed and manufactured for the tower lighting system of more than 20 000 individual LEDs. This system includes «72 OSRAM LED warm white 1W» that illuminate the drum during the night. Coverage under the drum displays the top of the cylindrical shaft, and the inscription «Cedes» blue lights above the drum. The overall effect of illumination is such that it can be visible within 10 kilometers.
A similar symbolic structure of the landscape is a few thousand miles to the west of the tower Cedes. In 1993, Fujitec America, Inc. He built a research and test tower at its plant in Lebanon, Ohio. The tower height of 64 meters there are four mines and one section for testing of escalators. On both sides of the square tower is visible frame construction and pyramidal roof is lined with blue tiles. The tower, which is called «one of the most prominent buildings of Warren County,» is not only used by the Department of R & D Fujitec, but also plays a major role in carrying out the National Safety Week trips to the elevators and escalators. During this important annual event second-year students often spend a tour of the tower, including, they rise to the top, to explore the surroundings.
In November 2006, Fujitec opened R & D center, called the Big Wing and located between Maibara and Hikone, Shiga Prefecture, south of Nagoya, Japan. The new center provides testing and research tower height of 170 meters. The tower is designed by Nikken Sekkei, Ltd. The tower features a distinct modern design, it consists of two elements: the 53-meter research tower and lobby on its top. Less than high tower has a gray finish and partially covers the high tower, forming the base. The higher tower with a white coating has several vertical red lines, which visually «break» its four mines. Two of them extend above the upper lobby, because of which the tower has a pronounced front and back sides. In the two towers, located behind the upper lobby, it provides a large square opening through which the sky can be seen in the daytime, but at night it turns into a luminous window. Top foyer glazed floor-to-ceiling windows and a wide semi-circular plate extends beyond the tower. In research tower can accommodate up to 13 lifts, including «ultra high model, which moves at a speed of 1 000 m / min (16.7 m / s).» This elevator brings visitors; he made «a glowing hourglass. Lights, floor, ceiling and walls on both sides, such as changes hourglass when moving the elevator. «
In January 2008, Mitsubishi Electric Corp. He has opened a new research and test tower at its plant Inazawa Works, the city Inatsava City, Aichi Prefecture, Japan. New tower height of 173 meters has replaced six test towers factory Inazawa Works, including the 65-meter tower, built in 1965. Designed by Mitsubishi Jisho Sekkei, Inc. The tower consists of a dynamic articulated white shaft rising from the explicit grounds rotated by 45 ° relative to the main tower.
The new tower is called Solae from the Japanese words «sora e» (literally «to the sky»). It was to be a symbolic landmark of the area, which can be seen «not only in the city Inatsava City, but because of its surroundings and even from the bullet train Shinkansen». Mitsubishi has noted that the height of the tower connects it with the local community in a unique way: «The game of words in the Japanese language used in mnemonics phone numbers, giving the number 173 as the sound Inatsava.»
The design of a testing tower for elevators used one of the first «green» architectural components. Its coating consists of white photocatalytic tiles which use «sunlight to initiate a chemical reaction, decomposition of pollutants to the surface from the air into harmless particles. Then, the particles are washed away by rain, the tower is completely clean, without any detergent. » Due to the great height of the tower used domestic oil dampers and anti-vibration system, resistant to wind. The force of the wind is reduced and further by the beveled edges of the tower, which change its direction and minimize the impact. As in the previous towers, the tower used Solae powerful external lights to LEDs, and at night the tower is a stunner.
April 15, 2009 the company Hyundai Elevator Co. Ltd. He has opened a new research and testing tower Icheone, Dzheonggi, South Korea. The building height of 205 m at the present time is the highest in the world test tower. At the opening of the tower had five mines, equipped with lifts that can move at speeds of up to 600 m / min. Now we plan to add two more elevators, which will reach a speed of 1080 m / min. The tower was named Hyundai Asan Tower «name of the late Chung Ju-Young, the founder of the syndicate Hyundai Group». The tower, designed by Hyundai Engineering, has a triangular cross-section, which is to «represent the company Hyundai Engineering and formalize the vision for the company HyundaiElevator». The corners of the tower are beveled and give support three external vertical farm, walking along the tower with gradually increasing sections: the first farm rises to the top of multi-colored base, the second goes to the middle of the tower, and the third up to the top. A distinctive feature of the tower — a cylindrical high-rise machine room with a platform Ferris, which is crowned by a pyramidal skylight.
Although now, Hyundai enjoys the highest tower in the world of research, a record for the design, provides the greatest lift path, it does not belong to her. That honor belongs to the built in 1998, KONE R & D laboratory in Lohja, Finland. To build a lift shaft with a lifting height of 333 m, for its new test facilities of the company took advantage of the former limestone mine Tytyri. Old massive mine also provided a unique opportunity to access: «The latest research equipment for elevators located in a residential town with a complex underground network of shafts, transportation routes and tunnels. This network provides fast and efficient installation of test equipment for the elevators. » The transport network consists of five access levels to which R & D engineers can drive through the tunnels, which can pass cars and small cargo vans. The underground test mine is reminiscent of a similar overhead structure, but it took little effort architects — on the surface of the building consists of a laboratory machine room and space for events, including seminars. This poses a unique «tower» in a special category.
And finally, a new test tower 203 m built in the factory of Hitachi Mito Works in Hitachinaka, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan. Construction of the tower will be completed this year. Externally, it looks like their Japanese predecessors height and distinctive architectural design in white. The tower will be nine mines, one of which is to establish a «very high speed elevator» that allows Hitachi to test «a new generation of elevators, maximum speed will reach 1 300 m / min.» This new structure and future research tower will continue to serve as a dynamic symbol of vitality lift building sector will remain an important aspect of modern industrial landscape and local attractions.
If companies or individuals wish to share photos, drawings and technical information about the test towers are not described in this series of articles, or provide additional information about the towers, which were dedicated to the article of the three months, please send such materials at 356 Morgan Avenue , Mobile, Alabama 36606 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Future Exhibition in a modernized virtual museum «Elevator World» will be devoted to this unique designs.