Looking ahead, huge skyscrapers in megacities will provide over 70% of the global population with living space, workplaces, and leisure facilities by 2050. In short, they will be cities within cities. The safe, efficient and comfortable transport of people and goods represents a huge infrastructural feat, and the basis from which to achieve this can be seen today in the new thyssenkrupp Test Tower for lift innovations. Safety, efficiency and comfort reign as soon as you enter the building, with visitors and employees being welcomed by the fully automatic Galaxy Gate access gate from Wanzl.
At an imposing height of 246 metres, the Test Tower is a stylish addition to the cityscape thanks to its futuristic façade made from a pale, light-reflecting fibreglass fabric. The sophisticated Galaxy Gate in the reception area also reflects the high-tech, inviting, friendly atmosphere. “Our Test Tower is a centre for science, as much as a centre for tourism. This is where we are shaping the future and making the most of the present, and so we have placed great emphasis on aesthetics,” explains thyssenkrupp’s Beate Höhnle, responsible for managing the Test Tower in Rottweil, adding that, “the stylish design and high-quality materials of the Galaxy Gate conform to the Test Tower’s design concept, and play a significant role in the decision to choose the Wanzl system.”The matte-finished stainless steel housing of the Galaxy Gate blends elegantly into the contemporary ambience of the foyer. The thyssenkrupp logo is emblazoned in vivid blue on the glass side panels. The RFID reader is discreetly integrated, flush to the casing and yet clearly visible. The green, blue or red backlit LED displays in the side sections, and the safety glass swivel arms clearly indicate whether access is granted.
“The tower is a landmark and a visitor magnet, a research facility and a great place for a day out. Visitors either come for the lift solutions of the future, or the outstanding 360° panoramic view. At 232 metres, our tower has the highest public viewing platform in Germany,” says Höhnle. Whatever the purpose of a visit, Galaxy Gate makes access to the tower both comfortable and efficient. The flexible keytego system has been integrated into the Wanzl Facility Management Control Unit (FMCU) so that different card systems can be used for access authentication. Take out your access card and scan for access authentication. The networked software checks the stored information in next to no time, and the arms swing open. Höhnle: “We expect heavy traffic at peak times. As a consequence, we need to be able to handle high footfall at the entrance, to guarantee effective and structured operation. Our guests should be able to reach their destination quickly and easily.”In order to flexibly manage both the tower and guidance systems, and to optimise them when required, the Galaxy Gate system includes an automatic visitor counter.
A magnet for tourists, a centre of innovation, a landmark – all major attributes which create a particular requirement for protection of the Test Tower. The entrance area in particular must satisfy strict security demands. “From a public as well as business perspective, a reliable access control system is absolutely vital. With its advanced, leading-edge technology, Galaxy Gate guarantees that we meet the very highest security standards,” emphasises Höhnle. The access gate only opens its software-monitored, electric-motor-controlled safety glass swivel arms after access has been approved. In addition, ceiling sensors scan personal and behavioural profiles, and oversee smooth operation. In the event of tampering, the access gate responds with optical and acoustic alarms, and immediately closes the swivel arms. This ensures that only authorised persons are granted access to the building. In emergency situations, the fully automatic entrance system has everything under control: swivel arms can be pushed open in the event of a power failure or in an emergency, and fire alarms are integrated as standard.
Construction of the test tower was – and is – a huge project. Up to 100 engineers, 15,000 m³ of concrete and 2,640 tonnes of steel were used. “Reliable partners are vital for tackling projects like this one, and to guarantee that everything runs to schedule. Wanzl have an excellent reputation in this respect,” Höhnle enthuses. Customer-specific solutions are the hallmark of the company. “The modular and variable design of Galaxy Gate was of particular importance to our planners, as space was at a premium in the reception area,” says Höhnle. A double system consisting of single and tandem units now guarantee barrier-free access to the Test Tower. Wanzl room dividers provide an elegant way of partitioning the entrance area, using stainless steel and glass, meaning that the gateway to the future is both stylish and secure.