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  • Electrical Engineer Serdar Tavaslıoğlu ASSESSMENT OF MACHINE ASSEMBLY IN ELEVATORS BY EN 81-1 + A3 (17 Ağustos 2015)

     Ignoring the differences introduced by the new standard EN 81-20, the largest amendments brought in TS EN 81-1 and riders can be said to be the protective devices against excessive acceleration of the cabin in the upward direction brought in article 9:10 and the protection against the unintentional cabin movement brought in article 9.11. Normal stopping of cabin at stops and levelling accuracy brought in article 12.12 was hardly cared although it requires a much larger change in structure. In reality, +/- 1 cm accuracy on fl oors will require using of the closed loop inverters almost in all elevators and foresees a condition that will fundamentally change constructing of economic two-speed elevator with relatively easier electronics. It is a diffi cult condition to ensure adjusting of the approaching accuracy of loaded or empty elevator to the fl oor from the same direction as +/- 1 cm except rate control is carried out with encoder controlled inverter. This means that no classic dual-motor speed machines can be used in elevator construction any longer. Though it requires a higher cost than that would be brought by the necessity mentioned in article 9.11 and leads to a larger structural change, article 9.11 has been much talked about and discussed.

     As is known, the mechanical safety assembly (parachute assembly) operating downwards mentioned in article 9.8 was required previously. In a rope elevator, the assembly is required to be activated and stop the cabin in case of breakage or excessive acceleration of the rope. Since the aim is "to stop the cabin, even in the event of rope breakage", the assembly has to be a mechanical system to ensure existence of this assembly within the cabin and safe operation of it. This assembly cannot be electrical, hydraulic or pneumatic for guaranteeing operation of the assembly. Moreover, for start of the movement of the elevator cabin, the mechanical safety devices as well as the regulator which will launch this system and the system which will stretch the regulator rope must be active. (This provision must be applied during installation of the parachute for safety and regulator suspension must not be operated without assembling the parachute device and regulator). This system does not allow the operation of the elevator unless it is enabled as a whole. So, the contacts which do not short-circuit in the elevator are stop contacts and regulator clamp switches. Due to the mechanical stress effect of regulator clamp switch and the condition that regulator clamp switch continuously runs, locked regulator clamp switches used in the tensioning system can make a huge risk. The deterioration of the ignition lock (that can be seen very often on the types of contacts used) will lead to an awkward situation according to the overall safety logic of elevator. Despite the lack of deterioration in the tensioning system during braking, the elevator will not come into operation and cannot be activated due to disabling of the regulator contact locked due to jumping. Also the mechanical clamp switch locking as a result of jumping due to mechanical braking will raise obstacles to rescuing in case of pulling of the cabin by electrical remote rescuing as it is one of the initial contacts in the safety chain.

    However, since this is not the main issue we want to stand above, I would like to put it aside and focus on articles 9.10 and 9.11 we started to implement in the new standard. A mechanical safety device which is mentioned in article 9.8 and will work mechanically in the cabin should be within the cabin and work mechanically in case of rope breakage. However, broken rope is certainly out of question in acceleration upwards or unintentional movement. So, the security systems mentioned in articles 9.10 and 9.11 can be outside the cabinet and can be mechanical external systems. Applicable standard determined their potential locations as follows.

    "TS EN 81-1 Article 9.10.1 The protection devices composed of speed control and speed reduction elements against excessive acceleration of the cabin moving upwards must determined uncontrolled movements of the cabin at least at 115% of the of rated speed and maximum at the speed identifi ed in Article 9.9.3 and it must stop the cabin or at least reduce the velocity of the cabin down to the speed level at which counterweight buffer is designed.

     9.10.4 Protection device against excessive acceleration of the cabin moving upside must be effective:

    a) in the cabin or

     b) in the counterweight or

    c) in the rope system (suspension or compensating ropes) or

    d) on the drive pulley (e.g., directly above or next to the drive pulley, on the same shaft)."

     Yet, Article 9.11.4 specifi es that the same device can be used in the same places for prevention of unintentional movement, and provides;

     "Stopping element of the safety assembly or devices which stop the cabinet can be common with those used for the following actions:

     - Preventing excessive acceleration downwards,

     - Preventing excessive acceleration of the cabin moving upwards (Article 9.10),

    Stopping elements of the safety security assembly may be different for up and down.

     Certainly, one of the easiest solutions in this case is to use the safety device and the regulator system used in the cabin in a two-way state. With this application, new conditions of the standard can be applicable with very simple additional standards without requiring a large scale arrangement. In the event of using a two-way safety device and bidirectional continuous locked regulator, terms of articles 9:10 and 9:11 become directly met. In particular, based on the documentation owned by mechanical brake and regulator up to 2017, regulators' “self-declaration” and applicability of the requirements of article 9:11 provides separate convenience. At fi rst glance, this method seems to be a seamless and security-enhancing application, whereas it can bear different problems in the event of a slight increase of rated speed or slight growth of the rated load.

     As is known, the static load case of the system is different from dynamic load case. The inertia of the system will be in the moving direction when the elevator starts. When trying to stop, the system certainly wants to continue to move due to inertia. Load balance varies considerably over the jump distance caused by the inertia depending on the speed of the system. Because it be will inclined to continue to move along the cabin or jump distance at counterweight and the load required to be stopped by the machine will be P + Q instead of Q / 2. Jump distance of 3.5 cm at as low speeds as 1 m/s prevents deep feeling of this case. But the jump distance gets longer as speed increases and the dynamic load to be stopped by the pulley grows and requires a longer distance for stopping. In synchronous motors using pulleys especially hardened to defeat the rope pressure in the small pulley, special 6.5 mm ropes that are harder than normal ropes are used, therefore friction values become smaller, which requires more careful caring of the case. Unless it is necessary, drive pulley diameters must not be reduced or pulley groove angles must be chosen consciously. In order to regulate this situation, the new standard allowed the inverter torque control instead of scrolling in the event of blocking of the system under drive capability and thus using of higher positive friction values. Thus, it will be possible to get higher values for drive ability for the normal operating conditions. The following fi gure simply depicts jump distances and load conditions.

    Figure: Forces on the pulley in static case System load

     Forces on the pulley in dynamic case

    System load

     Movement direction

    Jump distance


    This is a condition that is taken this into consideration during mechanical braking downwards and rails are selected with the strength to meet it. However, the large load arising due to the sudden or hard stop in the cabin in a mechanical braking in an upward direction, continuing to rotate with the inertia of the machine and suspending of the counterweight on the other side is met by the machine and its base. Considering the electromagnetic braking stop, in braking in an upward direction of a based calculated by a factor of k 2 (1.2); matching with the k 1 (2, at least two, whereas 5 in brakes which are non-skid brakes though called slip) factor may produce unexpected damage. In particular, connecting downhole machine in MRL elevators can create different results. Even at rated speed of 1 m/s, slightly hard braking can severely damage the system. The elevator system relies on whether or not there really is slip rather than the phrase slip in the mechanical brake. If the brake hesitates to slip a little, very grave consequences can come out. It should be noted some time in the past the elevator machine manufacturers removed the warranty in the event of using of certain brakes.


     Addition of a constantly locked regulator to the dual brake system in practice to meet the requirements of article 9:11, different problems are created.

     1. As a constantly locked regulator is used instead of a monitoring device, the elevator passes to mechanical locking in each safety chain circuit outage. Although formation of unintended movement in the elevator is a problem that can be seen more rarely, interruption of safety circuit chain (a door contact fault, contact tightness of the door opening to the well, plugwall plug failure) is one of the most common failures. Every failure causes a mechanical locking. This creates problems in the machine and base especially in braking upward.

    2. Due top in jams in some locked regulators, mechanical problems can occur even in normal operation of the elevator due to loading and unloading movement.

    3. Since the elevator brakes mechanically at every failure or power outage, rescuing in the cabin is almost impossible. If the regulator lacks a mechanical system to remove from the brake the coil, it gets quite diffi cult to recover those left in the elevator.

    4. Double brake gear machines also face the same problem. Both brakes are not able to be opened simultaneously. Defi nitely at least two people are needed. Especially in systems which did not take measures to this end, it has become a serious problem.

     Mechanical braking at each failure of the elevator outside rescuing operation is also a problem. It is certain that these numbers of braking given for mechanical brakes have already been exceeded passed because the elevator brakes at every failure. Unfortunately, elevator mechanics found a remedy by cancelling this system. These words are not for security systems in a right working system.

    This system can be more easily resolved in synchronous machines. As mentioned in paragraph d) under articles 9.10.4 and 9.11.4, there is a braking system on the main shaft. If this system is certifi ed according to 9.10 and 9.11 outside of the normal brakes, then this can also be done via synchronous lift motors without the need for a security system assembly. However, attention must be paid to the presence of the following conditions.

     1. The elevator motor brake must have a certifi cate of conformity issued by the Notifi ed Body according to 9:10 and 9:11.

     2. There must be an ignition and control system which controls the jaw of the both brakes and prevents removing of the system in case of failure of closure of one.

    3. "When the protective device mentioned in article 9.10.5 works, it should activate the appropriate electrical safety device according to Article 14.1.2", the protection device must be active. It means that only a one-way brake is available for a double-acting regulator and double-acting brake mechanism.

     When above conditions are met, the mandatory one-way brake down can be used in the cabin in accordance with 9.8 and the assemblies as required by 9.10 and 9.11 can be used as electrical brake in the machine. This is can be considered as a better way of ensuring security in both mechanical safety of the elevator and the recovery movement.


     As the condition of drive pulley is met (for instance; directly on the drive pulley or the right by the pulley on the same shaft) under paragraph (d) of articles 9.10.4 and 9.11.4, requirements of both articles are fulfi lled in gear machine as in synchronous motor. However, it must be monitored under any circumstances with brake contacts that both parts of the brake system are active. The brake monitoring contacts should be connected to the board and be under controllable conditions


     1. Devices for locking landing doors.

     2. Devices to Prevent falls Referred to in point 3.2 of Annex I to prevent the car from falling or uncontrolled movements.

     3. Overspeed limitation devices.

    4. (a) Energy-accumulating buffers:

     (I) non-linear, or

     (Ii) with damping of the return movement.

    (B) Energy-dissipating buffers.

    5. Safety devices fi tted to jacks of hydraulic power circuits where these are used as devices to prevent falls.

     6. Electric safety devices in the form of safety circuits containing electronic components.

     The new Directive expanded audit requirements related to the Notifi ed Bodies and increased sanctions. Moreover, the new standard removed the "Bumper effective brakes", "return buffered energy storage buffers", "fl y-ball regulators" and "hydraulic clamping devices (clamping device)" has been removed. 

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