China has already claimed stock in the electric power market. Now it’s investing in fluid power. Hydraulic motors will drive The Great Beijing Wheel, which starts service in the Chinese capital in time for the 2008 Olympic Games.
The Great Wheel Corporation chose Bosch Rexroth to provide project engineering, shipment, and installation of the complete hydraulic drive and control systems, as well as the automation for passenger boarding stations.
The drive system comprises a powerful, nearly maintenance-free hydraulic power unit. Additionally, hydraulic motors will drive 32 special tires that contact the 648-foot diameter wheel, making it rotate at a constant speed of three times an hour. A fail-safe backup system ensures reliable operation, even if a fault develops in the main circuit. The Rexroth drive concept has already been operating successfully on England’s London Eye, which is currently the largest Great Wheel in Europe.
The 48 capsules on the Great Beijing Wheel each have space for 40 passengers who can enter and exit while the wheel is turning. Each capsule is equipped with a state-of-the-art audio and visual information system that describes Beijing and the surrounding area.
Bosch Rexroth is supplying the automation equipment for the moving boarding stations. The stations will be synchronized with the motion of the Great Wheel and will be located on either side. To avoid unnecessary stops and starts and the potential loss of inertial energy on the wheel, passengers will board via special cars on a separate track. These cars will then travel alongside to match the speed of the wheel at the bottom of its rotation so passengers can transfer in and out of the cars. The wheel will turn nearly 5,800 passengers per hour.
The Great Wheel Corporation
:: Design World ::