Five Of The World’s Tallest Lifts

Lifts or elevators enable us to live and work in extremely tall buildings without having to do a marathon to get to the right floor.  Humans have always strived to build buildings that reach the sky this is evident from the church spires and the Egyptian pyramids.  Technology allows us to construct buildings up to 2,717 ft high. The tallest artificial structure in the world is Burj Khalifa in Dubai which has 163 floors making lifts extremely necessary.

There are two types of lifts or elevators rope or cable lifts and hydraulic lifts.  Hydraulic lift systems are more suitable in lower buildings because the size of the equipment would get too large to reach higher floors.  Very tall buildings use a rope pulley system because it doesn’t require as much space. Cable systems a much safer due to electromagnetic breaking systems which prevent the lifts from hurtling down the shaft like they do in the movies.

Skyscrapers and other tall buildings rely heavily on lifts to enable the occupants to get to multiple floors.  Without lifts and elevators, these magnificent pieces of engineering would be virtually inaccessible due to the sheer effort it would take to climb up to the floors.  Modern-day lifts use computer systems to manage them. They use the knowledge of where the lifts are, where people want to go and where the floors are to ensure the lifts run smoothly.

The Five Tallest Lifts In The World

Here is a list of the five tallest building in the world which accommodate the tallest lift systems.

Burj Khalifa

Burj Khalifa

The Burj Khalifa in Dubai is the presently the tallest building in the world reaching the dizzy heights of 828m. Construction started in 2004 and with the grand opening in 2010.  It has 163 floors two observation points, a restaurant 555m up and a huge shopping mall and musical fountain at its base. People travel all over the world to see this amazing feat of engineering.

Shanghai Tower

The Shanghai Tower against a blue sky (Panoramic)

The Shanghai Tower against a blue sky (Panoramic)

Shanghai Tower is the tallest tower in Shanghai in China it is 632m high with 128 floors.  Five of the floors are below ground with one linking to a subway station. It has many purposes including; offices, hotels, retail, parking, exhibitions, art shows and is a huge tourist attraction.

Abraj Al-Bait Clock Tower


The Abraj Al-Bait Clock Tower is located in one of the holiest places in the world.  It was completed in 2012 in Mecca Saudi Arabia and is 601m high with 120 floors.  The iconic clock tower complex is 50m away from the Islamic holiest site Kaaba which houses the worlds largest mosque where millions of Muslims travel for their annual pilgrimage.   It also has hotels, shopping malls, an Islamic museum and residencies.

Ping An Finance Centre

Ping An Finance Centre

The Ping An Finance Centre in Shenzhen China is 599m tall with 115 floors and was opened in 2017.  It is a large glass structure located in the centre of Shenzhen’s growing central business district.  It encompasses; office space, a large podium, retail and conference space. There are also connections to nearby commercial and residential properties and public transport.

Lotte World Tower


The Lotte World Tower in Seoul South Korea is 554m high with 123 floors incorporating a luxury hotel, office space and marketed as being in the centre of global business.  It is described as a ‘gigantic vertical metropolis’ which promotes culture and the arts with a concert hall, aquarium, cinema and museum. (Source: Wikipedia)

Humans build tall buildings for practical reasons such as saving space and as a status symbol to show how much they can achieve and stand out from everyone else.

If you are intrested in installing lifts in your own superstructure contact us to discuss the different types of lifts we have available.

How Many Types Of Lifts Are There?

Lifts have revolutionised all aspects of life allowing buildings to be accessible and to improve deliveries and services in many different industries.  A lift is simply a platform that moves up and down carrying either people or products. Presently there are five main types of lifts; barrel hoists, disability platform lifts, Mezzanine Goods Lifts, scissor table lifts and service lifts.

Archimedes invented the very first lift in 336 BC using a simple open carriage contraption pulled up vertically using hoists.  The very first lifts were manually operated by people, animals and occasionally wheels. They were used to transport water, building materials and other heavy objects with ease.

The Romans continued to use these types of lifts for many years contributing to the rise of the Roman Empire.  King Louis XV commissioned the very first passenger lift in 1743 to carry him up to his mistress’ apartments on the second floor.  The technology was very much the same as the lifts the Romans used. Lifts became mechanically operated in the 1800’s due to advances in technology. (Source:

Barrel Hoists

Barrel hoists lift barrels and cylindrical objects between floors in licensed premises, public houses and restaurants.  They are simple to operate and maintain and only require a 240-volt single phase supply. Constant pressure push buttons provide complete control during all aspects of the operation. A braked motor interlinked to a sprocket assembly with twin chains enables equal distribution of the load.  Two cantilevered steel arms support the load within the mainframe.

The barrel hoist is able to transport beer kegs, drums and gas cylinders to different levels regardless of their awkward shape.  Compliance with European safety regulations results in a safe working environment with no risk of personal injury.

Disability Platform Lifts

Disability platform lifts enable businesses and visitors centres to comply with the 2010 Equality Act.  They allow people with mobility issues, breathing difficulties, low energy and heart conditions to enjoy work and pleasure without restrictions.  People with disabilities are able to effortlessly move between different levels on a simple platform using constant pressure buttons. There is a call station at every landing stage and the lift is able to operate between two to six floors.

Each lift has a capacity of 400 kg which is approximately four people.  The mechanism is a screw and nut assembly powered by 380/3/50 vac electric motor.  Flooring is none slip and each lift is self-supporting with only the landing stages connected to the building structure.  Access to the lift is either via a ramp or level access at floor level.

Mezzanine Goods Lifts

Mezzanine goods lifts make it possible to move goods, cartons, pallets and other large deliveries without manual intervention. Each lift is individually designed to suit the environment it is operating in.  

They are self-supporting structures with fixings at each floor level. Access is via a ramp or shallow pit area. There is an electronic push button at each level with safety gates.  All Mezzanine goods lifts comply with the Essential Safety Requirements of machinery safety regulations.

Scissor Table Lifts

Scissor table lifts are used to load trucks and unload goods in order to place them in storage.  They are available with single, double or triple vertical scissors depending on the length of the platform.  Every unit is designed to accommodate each individuals companies requirements in relation to the platform size and lifting height.

They can be installed in either a pit or at floor level with the option of a concertina safety mesh around the perimeter.  Hydraulic power packs drive the lifts either mounted or remotely depending on its size. Work cradles can be mounted onto the structure if required.

A full perimeter pressure safety bar causes the lift to stop immediately if there is an obstruction when it is being lowered. The lifts are built to comply with the essential safety requirements of machinery safety regulations.

Service Lifts

Service lifts are traditionally known as, ‘Dumb Waiters’, because they transport food and dirty dishes to and from the kitchen.  They are set at a height which makes unloading and loading comfortable for the user. They are also referred to as under bar lifts and are supplied with either a 50 kg or 100 kg capacity. The maximum distance is 4000 mm between each floor.

They are operated by a push button call station with lights to indicate progress.  A sprocket and chain drive drives the lift and is mounted in a machine room at the top of the lift.  Food grade stainless steel is used and the machinery complies with the essential requirements of machinery safety regulations.  Challenger Dumb waiters also carry a CE mark.

If you would like to find out more about the different lifts we manufacture please contact us.


Lifts With Wow Factor

At Challenger Group we are very proud of the lifts we manufacture but are first to admit that; disability platform lifts, mezzanine goods lifts, scissor table lifts and service lifts are more practical than interesting.  We thought that we would lighten up your coffee break or commute with examples of amazing lifts all over the world.

AquaDom – Germany

Source: Visitsealife

If you dream of swimming in the deep ocean with lots of beautiful fish without getting wet, then this truly is the most amazing lift you will ever experience.  The AquaDom is located in a sealife centre in Berlin.  The dimensions of this lift structure are:-

  • 25 metres high
  • 2000 tons
  • 12 metres wide
  • 1 million litres of water
  • Over 1,500 fish
  • ¾ divers clean the tank
  • 8 Kg of food is used every day.

People even get married in the AquaDom – hopefully that is not when there is a school trip on.

Rising Tide Elevator

Source : Oasis of the sea Blogspot

Keeping with a nautical theme, if you love the ocean and a cocktail or two this is the lift for you. The Rising Tide Elevator or Bar, as it should be more accurately called, is located in the MS Oasis Of The Sea.  The lift acts as transportation and entertainment in the largest cruise ship in the world.  Apparently the whole journey takes 8 minutes and you can enjoy cocktails with 34 other passengers.  There is even a zip wire on the deck of this giant floating paradise.  If you happen to win the lottery you may want to experience this lift for yourself – don’t forget to send a postcard.

Hammetschwand Elevator – Switzerland

Source: My Switzerland

Located in Switzerland, the Hammetschwand Elevator is not for the faint hearted.  With the accolade of being the highest external lift in Europe.  It travels 153 metres to look over Lake Lucerne.  The experience last less than a minute.  In 1935 it was upgraded from being a wooden structure to being a metal one.  It is obviously the quickest way to reach the summit so if you don’t like heights close your eyes.

The Sky Tower – Auckland (NZ)

Source: Wikipedia

The Sky Tower is huge with a wonderful view and iconic status in the Auckland skyline.  There are three glass fronted lifts that whizz up to the top in seconds and the structure is earthquake proof.  Here are some more amazing facts about the Sky Tower.

  • 328 metres tall.
  • Tallest man made structure in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • Part of the Skycity Auckland Casino Complex.
  • Took three years to build 1994 – 97.
  • Has a rotating restaurant
  • Five levels can be accessed by the public.
  • Over 415,000 people visit per year.

One family wasn’t impressed by the structure on the 7th August 2011 because the lift stopped working for 45 minutes and they were trapped inside. (Source: Auckland Now)

They are all amazing lifts in awesome settings but they all actually work on the same principle as that conventional lift in your office – only in a much more exciting location.  If you would like to find more information about our practical well manufactured lifts please contact us here.

Scissor Lifts at the Challenger Group


What is a scissor lift?

Scissor lifts are used across a wide range of industries including retail, service, transport and manufacturing.  They are used to lift materials, goods, or people up and down.  In everyday use you may often see them being used to load or unload trucks, being used in large supermarkets to help stack products or perhaps at your local car garage.  Scissor lifts do not use vertical supports to lift objects up but linked supports instead that come together when the lift is raised and concertina down when the platform is lowered. The speed at which they raise slows down as the supports straighten out.

A brief history

It was in the 1970s when the first scissor lifts were produced but since then many safety and technical improvements have been made.  It became popular as an alternative or extra to a forklift as they were just as effective and portable but also had the ability to be packed away when not in use.

Challenger Scissor lifts

The Challenger Group stocks a large selection of different scissor lifts ranging in capacity from 50 kg to 4000 kg and are supplied to suit the individual’s needs, including options such as an electrical or hydraulic action and also varying sizes of platform. They are also available with either single, double or triple vertical scissors dependant on the heights they need to reach. We also offer extra safety measures such as a concertina mesh which can be mounted around the scissor and all lifts also all come with a safety pressure bar which stops the machine instantly in the event of something obstructing it.

Click here for information about all of our scissor lifts