Electric Passenger Elevators


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8.5" x 11"
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Comprehensive SpecsArchitectural Specs
  • Electric Passenger Elevators

Use this comprehensive 3-part SimpleSpecs specification template to specify Electric Passenger Elevators for passenger use. Freight elevators are not included but can be added to this section.

What are Electric Passenger Elevators?

Commercial electric passenger elevators, also referred to as traction elevators, are a common type of elevator used in commercial buildings like offices, hotels, malls, and high-rise structures. They differ from hydraulic elevators primarily in their lifting mechanism and are suited for medium to high-rise buildings due to their higher speed and efficiency.

Most aspects of elevator design, construction, and operation are governed by several ASME code documents that have been adopted by the ICC International Building Code:

  • ASME A17.1/CSA B44 – Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators.
  • ASME 2 – Guide for Inspection of Elevators, Escalators and Moving Walks
  • ASME 5/CSA B44.1 – Elevator and Escalator Electrical Equipment.
  • ASME 6 – Standard for Elevator Suspension, Compensation, and Governor Systems.

Due to the existence of these codes specifying what is a complex system is relatively easy.

Elevator cab size and capacity, operating speed, and control type should be determined based on the building’s use and occupancy. For example, an office building where there are peak elevator loads twice per day requires a different control system than a hotel where the loads are more balanced throughout the day. A qualified elevator manufacturer or consultant can assist in making these determinations.

Elevator doors prevent riders from falling into, entering, or tampering with anything in the shaft. The most common configuration is to have two panels that meet in the middle, and slide open laterally. In a cascading telescopic configuration (potentially allowing wider entryways within limited space), the doors roll on independent tracks so that while open, they are tucked behind one another, and while closed, they form cascading layers on one side.

This can be configured so that two sets of such cascading doors operate like the center opening doors described above, allowing for a very wide elevator cab. In less expensive installations the elevator can also use one large “slab” door: a single panel door the width of the doorway that opens to the left or right laterally. Some buildings have elevators with the single door on the shaftway, and double cascading doors on the cab.

Electric elevators can be machine-room type where the hoisting machines are mounted over the shaft.  Or machine-room-less type where the hoisting machine is mounted on the guide rails. Machine-room-less elevators require a larger hoistway but a small control room rather than a machine room.

The interior of the elevator cab can be factory pre-finished using a manufacturer’s standard offerings or custom designed and fabricated.

To learn more about elevators, visit Wikipedia.

Related SimpleSpecs specification template:

14 24 23 – Hydraulic Passenger Elevators



Electric Passenger Elevators

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