DirectDrive on the Hasenköpfl detachable 8-seater chairlift in Sexten (IT)
Photo: Leitner
Advertorial New ropeways Technology


LEITNER DirectDrive - Pioneering drive technology for more than 20 years

LEITNER was quick to see the importance of the direct drive for the future of ropeway engineering. LEITNER’s gearless DirectDrive, which operates with a frequency inverter, has been setting standards worldwide for more than twenty years now. Customers particularly appreciate the high level of reliability, outstanding user friendliness, and ease of maintenance plus low maintenance requirement. So it is not surprising that the LEITNER DirectDrive is now the reliable heart of more than 200 ropeway installations in more than 25 countries.

The fact that the DirectDrive is a 100% in-house solution – from the planning and development work to the engineering – is the key to top product quality and continuous innovation leadership. With the company’s long years of experience, Leitner can guarantee maximum product expertise plus advisory competence for the right solution for every requirement. “From the drawing board to the ski slope” – this distinctive quality advantage has attracted customers all over the world for more than twenty years now. As a wholly in-house product, the “Original by Leitner” is always state of the art, with the company’s research activities constantly benefitting the DirectDrive.

Leading through innovation in terms of efficiency and reliability

With the Leitner DirectDrive, the highest technological standards combine with maximum convenience in terms of operation and maintenance. The practical advantages are particularly clear with regard to ease of repair: Repairs can normally be completed within a few hours without curtailing the running of the system. With their very low weight, the coils, for example, can be replaced particularly quickly and easily. Nor do the station panels need to be opened to perform any work on the system, so that downtime is a thing of the past.

The DirectDrive also achieves top marks when it comes to efficiency and flexibility. Leitner’s perfected technology achieves up to 94% efficiency in the partial to peak load range. The redundant design of the DirectDrive also contributes to the outstanding level of performance. In particular, the use of multiple segments greatly increases operational reliability; with a correspondingly oversized motor, the required output can be supplied to the system even in the case of a segment malfunction.

The flexibility of the Leitner DirectDrive is clearly demonstrated by the underground funicular in Serfaus, which features the first DirectDrive with a vertical bullwheel, a useful alternative for aerial tramways, funiculars and bulk material conveyor belts. It helps make  the Leitner DirectDrive the ideal solution for all types of ropeways.

Photo: Leitner
First Leitner DirectDrive with a vertical bullwheel on the underground funicular in Serfaus (AT)
Photo: Leitner
Picture: Leitner
Schematic drawing of the heart of the Leitner DirectDrive, the slow-running synchronous motor
Picture: Leitner

Perfected technology with environmental benefits

At the heart of the Leitner DirectDrive is a synchronous motor directly connected to the bullwheel. It has three moving parts: the rotor and two bearings. There is no need for the amount of transmission fluid required with a conventional planetary gearbox. As the Leitner DirectDrive operates with fewer parts and at a lower speed, wear and malfunction risks are significantly reduced. In addition to enhanced reliability and efficiency, lower noise levels are a further major advantage. The Leitner DirectDrive is operated in combination with a LeitDrive frequency inverter perfectly adapted to the motor for maximum overall efficiency in all load ranges. The use of waste heat from the fluid cooling system offers synergies for the heating or hot water system. This also puts Leitner’s DirectDrive in the premier league in terms of sustainability and the conservation of resources.

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