Gondola lift

A gondola lift is a cable car, in which several cabins ( colloquially gondolas called ) are clamped to a constantly revolving cable and are thereby moved again to a lane side from one station to another and on the opposite side back to the first station, the cable usually runs over cable car supports. In the stations, the cabins are usually disconnected from the rope and hanging out on a rail for departure in the opposite direction. The cabins are slowed down to get in and out or even completely stopped. The separation of driving fast on the track and slow transit station to the smooth exchange of passengers a high transport capacity is achieved. The standard gondolas have a capacity of 2 to 15 people. On the outside of the smaller pods often are brackets for winter sports equipment such as skis and snowboards.

Occasionally, large cabin ropeways are colloquially referred to as the gondola, although these are technically own type of cable car.


Gondolas are found mostly in ski resorts and carry there in winter winter sports and year-round mountain hikers and other tourists. They have sometimes special gondolas for transporting injured persons or of paragliders and hang-gliders or other loads, for example for the restaurant the mountain station or for a mountain hut. Frequently gondolas serve as tourist attractions, ranging from the Schauinslandbahn, which opened in 1930 the first passenger gondola, on the older cable cars from Rüdesheim am Rhein to the Niederwald Monument and the Waldecker mountain railway up to the modern long distances spanning gondolas, such as Skyrail Rainforest Cableway in Australia, the Genting Skyway in Malaysia or the Ngong Ping 360 in Hong Kong. In larger amusement parks or on sprawling exhibition facilities and zoos are also cable cars to take so-called Skyrides, the gondolas on the various national garden shows or the gondola over the Ocean Park in Hong Kong.

Some Gondolas are part of public transport in mountainous places like the new Renon cable car in Bolzano, the gondola that connects Annaba in Algeria, with the high-lying suburb Seraidi that the lines J and K of Metrocable within the Metro de Medellín, Colombia or Metro cable in Caracas, Venezuela, but also on flat terrain to cross bodies of water such as the Rhine cable cars in Cologne and Koblenz, the (1994 again degraded ) Mississippi Aerial River transit in New Orleans or the Volga Nizhny Novgorod cable car. The Vinpearl Cable Car in Nha Trang, Vietnam connects the coastal town with an island 3.1 km away in the sea. For public transport, the small gondolas with open gondolas are suppose to count for a person who Svetlogorsk (formerly noise in East Prussia ), join in Odessa or Yalta in Ukraine the beach with the high places.


Gondolas have flat, horizontally oriented stations because of the long, horizontal distance, is required for the exchange of passengers and coupling procedure and also the hanging bars with the routes for the engagement and disengagement, the acceleration or deceleration of the gondolas and the course of the Abstellschienen and need parking garages horizontal space. Prior to the valley station therefore there is always a hold-down bracket with longer roller batteries that creates a transition between the horizontal station exit and the subsequent slope part in one-cable systems. Conversely, stands in front of the hill stations mostly a prop or support group or even a dome structure with extensive depending on the required cable deflection sheave assemblies, which in turn ensure a moderate change in slope at the transition from the slope to the horizontal mountain station entrance. In the stations, the endless spliced ​​rope runs to form a loop in each case over a large deflection pulley, which is connected in a station to the drive motor and the other is located on a mobile carriage, which is retracted by the multiple -ton clamping weights or by a hydraulic tensioning device so that the wire always has the same voltage. Gondolas over very long distances are divided into sections, which are in themselves separate systems with their own ropes and their own accord, but are usually connected in the middle station by hanging rails together so that the gondolas can automatically go from one section to the next to the rails hanging without the passengers have to change trains. The middle station can also be designed as an angle station when changing the direction of the track at this point. Theoretically, this series of sections can be repeated.

Gondolas can, if this is required for the intended use, a certain size of the nacelles are designed as accessible (from about 8er-/10er gondola ), in smaller vehicles may lead to restrictions on the door width and space for wheelchairs or pushchairs. In Switzerland must be disabled ( with the exception of ski-and chairlifts ) according to the Disability Discrimination Act cableway from nine seats per transport unit.

Cable car variants


The detachable single is the most common variant of the gondolas. At their serving simultaneously as a revolving rope suspension and traction cable, and is called as a transport cable. Its origins go back to the one-cable ropeways, which were introduced by the Englishman Hodgson in 1868 and known as the English system. The cabins do not have a drive, but are covered with a dome clamp ( Müller- terminal and Von Roll terminal as historical examples, current terminals with spiral or torsion springs of different modes of operation and the manufacturer) attached at the exit in the station on Rope and on arrival redissolved. The cabins, which were formerly often referred to as gondolas eggs because of their characteristic shape, have two to a maximum of 15 places and are usually closed. However, there are also older tracks with gondolas and open only one general admission or semi-open gondolas with two to four seats. In very warm areas of Asia tracks are sometimes built with half-open gondolas even today.

The detachable single has a speed of up to 6 m / s (21 km / h) and a capacity of up to 3,600 people per hour.

There are simple Monocable (eg the basket lift ), in which the small open gondolas firmly attached to the rope ( fixed-grip ) are. These systems can only drive slowly to allow safe entry and exit. However, they were almost all replaced by other cable transport systems.

Two rope orbit / 2S -Bahn

Two rope orbits (2S- paths ) have a rope and a revolving pull rope. The support cable is firmly rooted in a station and is held in the other station with clamping weights or hydraulic clamping devices in a constant voltage. The pull cable runs as well as in the one-cable orbit in the stations to large deflection pulleys and moves the cabins, the ride with a suspension on the rope and are attached with a detachable clip on the hawser, out of which they are uncoupled in the stations and on hanging rails be. Its origins go back to the two-cable ropeways, which were introduced by Adolf Bleichert in 1872 and known as the German system. The two rope orbits came with the increasing performance of the ropes out of fashion, because one-cable circulation paths were easier and cheaper to build. Lately it falls back to the system in order to build larger and more powerful gondolas can. The cabins have up to 15 seats and reach speeds of up to 7.5 m / s (27 km / h) and flow rates of 4000 people per hour.

Tricable train / 3S -Bahn

Three rope orbits ( 3S lifts ) have been developed to use larger, up to 35 people comprehensive detachable gondolas hanging on two firmly anchored track ropes and be moved by a circumferential tension cable. The effect of the two supporting ropes, similar to the aerial tramway, a smooth ride and low wind sensitivity and allow the use of large nacelles. They have a speed of up to 7.5 m / s (27 km / h) and a capacity of up to 6,000 people per hour.


A further development is the Funitel, wherein each of up to 24 persons which is detachable gondolas suspended from two parallel revolving conveyor components giving a large distance (and no separate support cable has ). It has a speed of up to 7.5 m / s (27 km / h) and a capacity of 3,200 to 4,000 people per hour.

Group orbit

The group orbit has gondolas that train or Rope in groups of two to five gondolas are fixed clamped to a revolving. For entry and exit of passengers a group of gondolas in the two stations will stop the entire web. The driving speed is up to 7 m / s, the capacity is in function of the length for the low frequent stops. The advantage of these pathways is the most cost -effective construction compared to a detachable gondola. A well-known example is the Télécabine Panoramic Mont -Blanc in the Mont- Blanc massif.


When combined lift detachable gondolas and chair are in a web simultaneously used, the passenger has the choice of mode. There are separate training and boarding areas for users of the gondolas and chair. It has a speed of up to 5 m / s (18 km / h) and a capacity of up to 3,400 people per hour.


The longest cable car and at the same time longest gondola in the world is the 13 km long cableway Norsjö, a gondola between Örträsk and Mensträsk in the municipality of Norsjö, Sweden. It is the remainder of the 96 -kilometer Erzseilbahn between Kristine Berg and cars and is now used for tourism purposes. 30 detachable cabins with four seats hanging on a rope and be pulled from the pull rope with a speed of 10 km / hr.

The longest gondola in a section is the first section of the Ba Nà Hills Cable Car in Vietnam with 5042 m oblique length. This section has also the largest with 1292 m height difference of a section of a gondola.

The second longest cable car world is the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway in Australia with a total length of 7.5 kilometers (two sections).

The Matterhorn Express cable car in Zermatt, Valais Canton of Switzerland, with its total length of 6.53 km, the third longest cable car in the world. This 8-person gondola was was first extended only from Zermatt to Schwarzsee until 2010, the route to dry dock.

The Télécabine Panoramic Mont -Blanc with a length between the two stations of 4972 m and 4968 m in the horizontal plane is 2831 m with the largest span in Europe and the second largest in the world (and a height above ground of approximately 300 m), followed by the 3S gondola in Kitzbühel, Austria with a span of 2507 m and a height above ground of 400 m.

The Peak 2 Peak Gondola, a 3S gondola in Whistler (British Columbia) between the Roundhouse Lodge at the Whistler Mountains and the Rendezvous Restaurant on Blackcomb Mountain has the largest span of 3024 m between the cable car supports and from 3019 m in the horizontal world and the greatest height above ground of 436 m.

The 3.1 km long Vinpearl Cable Car in Vietnam is probably the longest over a stretch of sea ( some 60 m) leading cable car in the world.

The highest cable car and thus gondola in the world is the Dagu Glacier Gondola in Sichuan, China.