Pop-Sci Core77 Design Challenge/ Description
HUMAN POWERED
10/20/03



Description of Design

HUMAN POWERED ELEVATOR

The first thing that came in mind with the topic “human powered” was re-inventing a bicyle. I guess I wasn’t the only one. When thinking about the ways of travelling on the ground or in architecture, I found that there aren’t many ways to vertically between the floors. Staircase, elevators and... that’s all. So I begun to re-invent the elevator.

Elevator is a small public room, that one often uses with other people, and it must be easy to enter and leave. The most suitable way to transmit human power in this case seemes to be the hamster-in-the-wheel system. As a non-powered elevator couldn’t be called to the requested floor, the solution is a twin-wheel system – when You go upstairs, the other wheel moves downstairs.

The most important thing is the right transmission, otherwise it would be impossible to yourself lift up. Of course there are some technical tips that make the work of this elevator more convenient: the whole elevator turns in only one way on the central axis (which is fixed to the building), and the two cabins use sprockets just like in the rear of bicycle with gears. So when one “walks” up he don’t have to worry about falling back down when he/she stops, and when one goes down he/she doesn’t even have to walk – the elevator just moves down smoothly. And when You’re lucky and somebody’s going down at the same time when You go up, there’s less workJ

Of course this or any other human powered elevator can never replace the high-speed elevators in skycrapers or escalators with huge usage in subway stations, but it can be a funny and useful alternative to stairs and elevators in some architectural spaces, such as museums, indoor gardens etc.