Products and solutions, 2000-03-20, 01:00 AM
Industries segment: targeted elevator calling system reduces waiting times and enhances safety
Thyssen Aufzüge GmbH has developed a new targeted calling system for elevators which improves performance by 15 to 30 percent depending on the configuration of the elevator system and the number of floors in the building. It is also the world's first system of this kind providing an interface with central building management operations, thus enhancing safety aspects.
The targeted calling system replaces the conventional external calling system with buttons for up and down only. The only information supplied by the latter system to the central elevator group control unit, which coordinates elevator deployment, is the fact that an elevator has been requested and the direction the passenger wishes to travel in. The passenger cannot press the button for the required floor until he or she has entered the elevator car. The new calling system makes it possible to already specify where the elevator is required to go when requesting it. This means that the information supplied to the elevator group control unit is increased by 100 percent, resulting in enhanced performance and thus shorter waiting times. The first elevator installation with a targeted calling system of this type ? a group of five elevators serving eight floors ? went into operation in an insurance company building in Stuttgart, Germany in late February this year. Work on the second project for a 14-floor office building in Paris has already commenced.
This new targeted calling system permits users to request the elevator and select the floor they wish to go to by using touchscreens installed on each floor in the elevator vestibules. Once the desired floor has been selected on the touchscreen keypad, the elevator group control unit calculates which of the elevators is most conveniently positioned; a graphic display on the screen then informs the user which elevator he/she can take. There are no floor buttons in the elevator car anymore; the passenger is conveyed to his/her destination automatically.
Higher buildings with a large number of floors necessitate two steps for selecting a destination. The first step is to use the touchscreen to select one of the zones into which the elevator group control unit has subdivided the building, for example floors 15 to 30. The desired floor within that zone can then be selected. This principle means that it is not necessary for each elevator to travel to each and every floor, also enhancing the performance of the entire elevator group. Elevator installations with conventional external calling systems also use this zoning principle in larger buildings; the difference is that in such cases passengers have to find out themselves which elevator is allocated to a specific zone of the building and would be able to take them to the desired floor. Here again, the new targeted calling system from Thyssen Aufzüge offers significantly greater user comfort.
The calling stations can be installed according to a building?s characteristics in terms of architecture and layout, for example in free-standing columns in the elevator vestibule, in recessed form in the masonry or as wall-mounted consoles with a choice of different front-panel designs. The touchscreen?s graphic interface enables quick and simple programming of special functions. For example, control panels for specific floor-to-floor connections or for use by handicapped persons can be created; misuse can be prevented by code-protection or by connection with identification systems already installed in the building.
The possibility of integrating the targeted calling system with existing identification systems is just one of the advantages afforded by the interface with central building management operations. Thyssen Aufzüge?s targeted calling system is the only one on the market to offer this facility. However, the interface not only facilitates the allocation and management of special authorizations for using elevators; the information provided by the targeted calling system can also be used to establish how many people are on a specific floor at any given time. Such information is of help to security services after hours, and can even be of vital importance in the event of fire.