It seems like that along with biggest skyscrapers and flags, a race has also begun on who-has-the-biggest-escalator in the world. Today we are going to show you the longest spiral escalator that has been built in a shopping mall in Chinese city of Shanghai.
Is it really a stairs race as it seems?
Well there are some angles to understanding this engineering marvel’s usage. In malls, the escalators are installed in tandem so if one wants to go all the way, he has to cross half the length of the mall to the next escalator which takes time and patience. This is a normal practice used to forcefully promote shopaholic behavior among the shoppers. To many people, it is a constant source of annoyance and nothing more.
With this spiraling beauty however, you can skip all the levels you want and arrive at the particular level you want to go to and even reach the top directly. So this escalator is also aimed at reducing the inconvenience of the customers.
The escalator is six stories high. It was installed by Japanese company Mitsubishi Electric that has been in the escalator business since 1985. They were the first to attempt such an audacious escalator and as of now, no one else has joined the race (Pity, we would have loved that).
Building a curved escalator all the way to the top is a difficult skill as Mitsubishi explains. The company stated that circular designs are impractical as horizontal speed decreases as we move along a circular path. The company’s engineers employed the shift center method in which the curve of the escalator is changed according to the degree of the upward/downward gradient, thus providing smooth movement and constant speed throughout. Check out the video below to have a sense of its working.