Energy efficiency for (almost) everyone

Hydraulic lift drives: requirements and current solutions

Energy efficiency is playing an increasingly important part in the design of hydraulic lifts. As a result, inverter drives have been used in these lifts for quite some time. Up to this point, however, there has been a distinct lack of simple, cost-effective and reliable solutions. A new joint development from Blain Hydraulics and YASKAWA is now set to change things for the better.

Hydraulically powered lifts are known to be a more effective solution for heavier loads than cable-borne elevators, and cost 15 to 25% less. They also enable highly reliable and low-maintenance solutions, but they can only travel limited distances (up to around 18 m). However, when you consider that 95% of the world’s buildings have fewer than six storeys, and only 1% are high-rises, the market potential of lifts for lower buildings quickly becomes clear: 40% of the current total of 10 million lifts are of the hydraulic variety and 80,000 to 100,000 new lifts are installed every year.

Particularly in the face of increasing energy prices, energy efficiency is becoming an ever more important factor in the selection of components for new installations. In addition, the high number of hydraulic lifts already in operation offers an enormous modernisation potential, with energy efficiency also playing a central role in this case. Consequently, there is a great need for new and efficient drive concepts, with a particular emphasis on those for upgrading existing hydraulic lifts.