KONE launches new energy-efficient and innovative Direct Drive for escalators

March 14, 2012

KONE Corporation, trade press release, March 14, 2012

KONE, a global pioneer in developing energy-efficient solutions for People Flow in buildings, has launched the KONE Direct Drive for escalators, an innovative and energy-efficient escalator drive system designed for heavy use. The KONE Direct Drive has been widely used in KONE's highly praised KONE EcoMod(TM) 2 modernization solution, and is now available on a wider scale for new escalators. This tested and proven technology is already in use in over 130 references worldwide, such as McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, U.S. and the Rome Metro in Italy.

The new KONE Direct Drive consumes less electricity compared to standard drives on the market such as helical or worm gear drives. For example in typical cases, the KONE Direct Drive can consume between 10 and 20 percent less energy than a conventional worm gear drive*.

"We take very seriously our commitment to eco-efficiency and safety," says Reino Hyvärinen, Senior Vice President, Escalator Business, KONE. "Our latest innovation, the KONE Direct Drive for escalators makes good on that promise and delivers a drive solution that not only increases the energy efficiency of the drive but can also make the escalator safer and easier to maintain, which in turn provides a safer escalator for passengers in the long run."

Due to its location outside of the step band, the KONE Direct Drive is easily accessible, meaning most maintenance tasks can be performed in the pit without the need to disassemble the steps. This saves time and money and significantly improves safety for the escalator users as the maintenance work can be performed in a more efficient manner. The drive's location outside the step band also eliminates the risk of lubrication oil dripping on the steps.

Another important element to the KONE Direct Drive for escalators is its chainless design. The KONE Direct Drive is connected directly to the main shaft which means that the lack of a conventional chain system not only reduces maintenance and spare parts costs but also eliminates the risk of a drive chain failure.

Highlights of the KONE Direct Drive

Safe and reliable

- Chainless drive design eliminates risk of chain failure and need for oil
- Proven technology already used in over 130 metro and rail references worldwide

Efficient
- Motor is directly connected to the main shaft which increases efficiency
- Lower input power needed
- Up to 96% energy efficiency
- Up to 20% more efficient than a worm gear drive*
- Ideal with energy feedback system, possible to recover up to 63% of input power, compared to 37% with a helical gear and 29% with a worm gear.

Easily maintainable
- Drive located outside the step band provides easier access for maintenance
- Fewer spare parts needed due to simple configuration and chainless design 
*) References for energy savings are based on a typical commercial escalator installation moving upwards 50% of the time and 50% downwards. Vertical rise: 4.5 m. Step width: 1000 mm. Speed: 0.5 m/s. Operating time: 14 h/day, 6 days/week, 52 weeks/year. Load profile: 2.5 h - 0%, 10 h - 25%, 1 h - 50%, 0.5 h - 75%, 0 h - 100%.

For further information, please contact:
Tuukka Pakkala, Sales and Product Marketing Manager, KONE Corporation, tel. +86 13501614967


KONE's escalator team will be at Asia Pacific Rail 2012 in Hong Kong on March 13-15. Come hear experts Norbert Balkenhol, Johannes de Jong, and Chan Kin Wai present on topics ranging from energy efficiency and the new KONE Direct Drive for escalators to preventive maintenance and its importance in increasing safety for end users. 
 
View a rendering of the KONE Direct Drive in KONE's Media Library

About KONE
KONE is one of the global leaders in the elevator and escalator industry. The company has been committed to understanding the needs of its customers for the past century, providing industry-leading elevators, escalators and automatic building doors as well as innovative solutions for modernization and maintenance. The company's objective is to offer the best People Flow® experience by developing and delivering solutions that enable people to move smoothly, safely, comfortably and without waiting in buildings in an increasingly urbanizing environment. In 2011, KONE had annual net sales of EUR 5.2 billion and on average 35,000 employees. KONE class B shares are listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki Ltd in Finland.

www.kone.com