An Ancient Elevator to a Modern Thrill Ride

At a remote monastery in the Egyptian desert, there exists, even to this day, a small box with two ropes, each connected to a pulley, running through it. People wishing to enter the monastery must pull themselves up hand-over-hand. It’s been that way since the sixth century.

In Taiwan, the Taipei 101 tower now has elevators that whiz along at almost 40 mph. Plans exist for a tower in China that will have elevators approaching 45 mph. Such elevators must be pressure-controlled to prevent vertigo-inducing ear popping as they rocket skyward.