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Trade press, 2003-06-13, 12:00 AM

ThyssenKrupp Aufzüge modernized underground elevator with record "travel depths"

Exit point 441 meters down. The daily routine of the team in the underground offices of Spain`s Villarino Power Station in the North-West near the Portuguese frontier. ThyssenKrupp Aufzüge has modernized the elevator system and set a new record.

Compared to previous elevator travel heights achieved by ThyssenKrupp Aufzüge, which include 165 meters in London`s British Telecom Tower, 212 meters in the central building of Frankfurt`s Commerzbank or 348 meters in the Moscow`s television tower, the new height of 441 is the longest distance ever covered by a passenger elevator in Europe. This record is beaten world-wide only by the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur (452 meters) and the Sears Tower in Chicago (442 meters). A further special feature of the challenging project to upgrade the 22-year-old DC technology in the elevator system of the pump-fed power station is the direction of travel - downwards instead of upwards. Although for the last ten years, DC technology in elevator construction has had a relatively low profile and frequency converter technology is regarded as the current standard, the trend of such modernization activities is to retain the DC motor. Tailored to customers` requirements, an elevator complex can be modernized in phases and retrofitted, for example, with new control technology or new door drives. As evidenced by the Villarino Power Station, existing motors can continue to run reliably for 20 more years. This reduces modernization costs for owners of older elevator complexes. In recent years, ThyssenKrupp Aufzüge has specialised in the modernization of DC systems.

In Villarino, water falls during the day almost 400 meters from the storage lake and is fed to the underground turbines through a 7.5 meter wide pipe. During the night, some of this water is pumped back into the lake. Four access points are located at different levels along the "travel depth", which the power station staff reach safely and reliably using the modernized lift system. Given the long distance, a normal run at rated speed (3.5 m/s) takes two minutes, an inspection run through the shaft takes at least 15 minutes.

ThyssenKrupp Aufzüge GmbH is a subsidiary of ThyssenKrupp Elevator AG. ThyssenKrupp Elevator is the third largest elevator company in the world, with activities in over 60 countries at more than 800 locations. ThyssenKrupp Elevator AG has some 29.000 employees and achieved sales of approx. 3.5 billion euros in fiscal 2001/2002 (year ended Sept. 30, 2002). The company`s products include passenger and freight elevators, escalators and moving walks, stair and platform lifts, and passenger boarding bridges plus top quality service for the entire range.

Rosi Bauer
ThyssenKrupp Aufzüge GmbH
Public Relations/Marketing
Phone +49 (7158) 12 24 90
Fax +49 (7158) 12 22 07