History of the Elevator ;
Invention of the elevators, which is currently listed amongst the daily needs rather than the obligation to use only in the high-rise buildings, date back before the Christ. The history books contains information that Archimedes who lived around 200 BC constructed a simple hoist which was initially operated with manpower and that such hoists were used in the Roman Palaces. Such primitive elevators used during that era operated via manpower, animal power or water power. Starting from the midst of the 19th century, use steam power started to become generalized at the elevators used for transporting materials to the mines, warehouses or factories. Despite use of steam power, however, the elevators used were only in the form of a platform connected to the slings with no security measures. In 1853, the American inventor Elisha Otis constructed a simple freight elevator only operating between two floors and performed a demonstration by disabling the slings in order to demonstrate the security elements that shall prevent falling of the elevator. Such demonstration gained the confidence towards the security elements.
In 1846, Sir William Armstrong constructed a hydraulic crane and before 1870, the hydraulic machinery started to replace the steam-powered elevators. Establishment of pressurized water network in major cities is another factor influencing construction of hydraulic elevators. Hydraulic elevators are supported by a heavy piston, a cylinder moves inside such piston and are operated with pumps generating pressure by means of water or oil.
In 1867, the hydraulic elevator constructed by Leon Edoux in Paris was first demonstrated with the name “Ascenceur”. At the same time, the drive pulleys were started to be used at the elevators. Invention of the drive pulleys, which were in use at mining activities for a long time, dates 50 years back from aforementioned date.
The drive pulley has an important role in terms of movement range and practicability of the elevator. The ability to use multiple slings at the drive pulley improved the operational safety. In 1880, the German inventor Werner von Siemens started to use electrical motor at the elevators. The electrical motor was installed under the elevator car and operated by means of gears fixed to the hoistway walls via racks.
In 1887, Alexander Miles developed significant designs at the electrical elevator. The elevator developed and constructed by Miles employed self-opening and closing elevator doors which don’t open when not at the floor. Alexander Miles developed an automatic mechanism for this purpose. Back then, the users or the operators required a manual lock system for the hoistway, because when the users forgot to close the door opening to the hoistway, accidents causing people to fall into the hoistway occurred.
The electrical motor technology and control systems developed significantly as use of electricity becomes generalized by the end of the 19th century. The elevators with direct connection with the electrical motor as invented in 1889 sustained rapid development of the elevator technology in the 20th century at valuable and high-rise buildings. Traditional single speed motors are replaced by variable speed motors. Developments occurred in order to achieve smooth floor leveling and vibration-free cruise and electromagnetic technology replaced manual sling contacts and brake. Button control and complex signalization systems are also included amongst these developments. In 1903, this design was further developed as gearless electrical motors.