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View Diary: Free Energy Does Not Occur in Nature (23 comments)

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  •  elevators = necessity for disabled & elderly... (1+ / 0-)
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    barath

    ... and in any case don't use a whole lot of power relative to the service they provide.  Modern elevators are typically counterweighted so the primary application of power is starting and stopping, as with ground vehicles.  

    Without reliable elevators, any building for use by people who are older or use wheelchairs etc., has to be built on the ground floor.  

    The actual tradeoff here is "building up vs. building out."   Building out results in sprawl and much more use of horizontal transportation.  Elevators should be seen as equivalent to "micro light rail" that runs vertically.

    "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

    by G2geek on Mon May 14, 2012 at 10:03:03 PM PDT

    •  True (1+ / 0-)
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      G2geek

      Though they're an example of free energy that unfortunately isn't available in many places in developing countries.

      contraposition.org - thoughts on energy, the environment, and society.

      by barath on Mon May 14, 2012 at 10:06:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  sure, but the relevant metrics are local. (0+ / 0-)

        Elevators and multi-story construction go together: places that have one, have the other; places that don't have one, don't have the other.  I'd be interested if you know of any significant counterexamples.

        In the US, buildings did not go above six stories until the advent of elevators and reinforced concrete, starting in the early 20th century and really taking off after about 1925 - 1930.  There were exceptions but they were rare.

        Also to consider, the ability to lift building materials above one or two stories.  In the early 20th century in the US, hand-powered derricks attached to the corners of buildings, were feasible for buildings with small plan areas up to a few stories tall.  But as the plan area of the building increases, the limits of hand-powered hoisting become a factor, and materials elevators are needed.  Once one has the technology for materials elevators, one also has the technology for passenger elevators as part of the building design.  

        There is a bunch of interesting history in this area, that can be found with the appropriate keyword searches in Google Books: this includes engineering texts and also various trade journals.  

        "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

        by G2geek on Mon May 14, 2012 at 10:54:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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