Special drives for inclined lifts to transport passengers

To counter the ever-increasing volume to traffic, more and more cities are using cable cars for public transport. This is also true in the Bolivian capital, La Paz.


At 3,750 m above sea level, a cable car links the metropolis to the higher-up sister city of El Alto.


Cable car specialist Inauen-Schätti AG from Schwanden was involved with the project and provided an inclined lift, which acts as a feeder from the bus station to the cable car station.

In order to be able to offer consistently high product quality, Inauen-Schätti uses drive technology from SEW-EURODRIVE, which is supplied by Swiss general agent Alfred Imhof AG.


For a number of years, Alfred Imhof AG has supplied drives of various sizes for inclined lifts, with power from 7.5 to 90 kW. The drives all come from the standard modular system of SEW-EURODRIVE. The motors are adapted to the system in each case. They are all equipped with a dual-circuit braking system, which is certified in accordance with DIN EN 81-20:2014-11. Furthermore, a transmitter for soft motor control and an additional flywheel for optimal travel comfort are incorporated in the motor. The motors have a hand wheel, so that the car can be lowered manually to the next platform in the event of a sudden loss of power.


The 90 kW drive for the inclined lift in La Paz, a combination of SEW bevel gear and AKH motor, was delivered in September 2014. The inclined lift officially began operating as early as in February 2015. Since then, the system has transported passengers over a distance of 74 m from the bus station to the cable car station 26 m higher, at a speed of 2m/s.