Solar powered elevator unveiled in Spain

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From pv magazine Spain.

Fain Ascensores, a Spanish elevator company, has launched what it says is the world’s first lift designed to run solely on clean energy: the ION Green Solar.

The elevator, designed, developed and manufactured in Spain, uses a mechanism that works with solar energy and optimizes power consumption. Although it is connected to single-phase current, the elevator only uses it when the PV system does not generate enough electricity.

The innovation is possible because of a 30% weight reduction in the cabin, achieved by using high-strength steel; the inclusion of a new traction set-up; and the addition of the ‘KERS’ energy recovery system.

The first version of the elevator, labelled ‘Green’, only uses 400 W in operation – the equivalent of an hair dryer. That means savings of 96% on the electricity bill and 86% of CO2 emissions, according to the manufacturer. A second, ‘Solar’ model is connected to PV panels, completely eliminating grid electricity consumption and related carbon emissions.

Blackout resistant

Fain Ascensores says it ensures the safety and entertainment of passengers with a 10in thin-film-transistor screen that, in addition to offering news and videos, is in continuous communication with a customer service center team and technicians. “With this system you can control the operation of the elevator remotely 24 hours a day,” said the manufacturer.

In the event of a power outage the lift can keep operating up to a maximum of 100 trips and has a fast, safe rescue system operated by batteries with electronic speed monitoring, said the Spanish developer.

The elimination of electromechanical elements makes it possible to suppress noise for extremely quiet operation, the company added.

Fain Ascensores maintains more than 47,000 elevators and has a workforce of more than 700. It operates in Spain, Belgium and France and in 2018 reached turnover of €100 million.