Solve it Sunday: Elevating

Hello dear readers…yet another puzzle for you to keep your mind busy during these quarantine times.

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The first elevator machine is believed to have been the invention of Archimedes, in the third century BC. It took the form of a rudimentary cab supported by a hemp rope, and powered by the manual labour of humans or animals.

It wasn’t until 1852 that Elisha Otis devised his safety elevator, designed to lock in place by toothed guides at the side of the wall, if it started moving too quickly. He demonstrated the principle at Crystal Palace in 1853, on an open elevator platform above a stage, set between two toothed girders.

Most modern elevators are derived from his designs – but unlike his demonstration, they are enclosed within shafts. Though this is primarily for convenience, what benefit does a well-fitted shaft offer that a securely enclosed cab does not.

One thought on “Solve it Sunday: Elevating

  1. ANSWERS BELOW
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    When the elevator is flush with the shaft walls, the air beneath it provides some cushioning. If the cab were to fall, the increasingly compressed air would offer increased resistance, working against gravity.

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