Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3844383 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 29, 1974
Filing dateOct 23, 1973
Priority dateOct 27, 1972
Also published asCA980029A1
Publication numberUS 3844383 A, US 3844383A, US-A-3844383, US3844383 A, US3844383A
InventorsT Iwasaka, H Matsuzawa, T Yuminaka
Original AssigneeHitachi Ltd
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Elevator signaling system
US 3844383 A
Abstract
An elevator signaling system for use in a building having a plurality of elevator cars arranged in parallel for servicing a plurality of service floor landings, in which guide lamps are provided at each floor so that passengers waiting in the hall of a floor originating a hall call can be informed of expected arrival of one of the elevator cars responding to such hall call. In the system, the elevator cars are divided into a plurality of groups each consisting of a plurality of elevator cars servicing adjoining service floor landing portions and one guide lamp is provided for each elevator car group so that, when one of the elevator cars in one group responds to the hall call, the guide lamp associated with this group is energized. In order to energize these guide lamps, means for selecting one of the elevator car groups which can respond to hall calls are provided for each elevator car group.
Images(10)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 91 lnasakaseta a.

[ ELEVATOR SIGNALING SYSTEM [75] Inventors: Tatsuo Iwasaka; Takeo Ypminaka;

Hideto Matsuzawa, all of Katsuta, Japan [.73] Assignee: Hitachi, Ltd., Tokyo, Japan [22] Filed: Oct. 23, 1973 21 Appl. No.: 408,257

[30] Foreign Application Priority Data 9/1969 Suozzo et al 187/29 [451 Oct. 29, 1974 Primary Examiner-R0bert K. Schaefer Assistant Examiner-W. E. Duncanson, Jr. Attorney, Agent, or FirmCraig & Antonelli [57] ABSTRACT An elevator signaling system for use in a building having a plurality of elevator cars arranged in parallel for servicing a plurality of service floor landings, in which guide lamps are provided at each floor so that passengers waiting in the hall of a floor originating a hall call can be informed of expected arrival of one of the elevator cars responding to such hall call. In the system, the elevator cars are divided into a plurality of groups each consisting of a plurality of elevator cars servicing adjoining service floor landing portions and one guide lamp is provided for each elevator car group so that, when one of the elevator cars in one group responds to the hall call, the guide lamp associated with this group is energized. In order to energize these guide lamps, means for selecting one of the elevator car groups which can respond to hall calls are provided for each elevator car group.

7 Claims, 22 Drawing Figures PATENTEDUCI 29 I974 3. 844.388

sum 02 or 10 FIG. 3

CAR A CAR 8 CAR C PATENTEDBBT29 I914 3.844.383

sum on or 10 FIG. 6 CANIRI RI N002 PATENTEDumze m4 3,844,383 sum near 10 .PATENTEnumzs I974 3.844383 SHEET 07 0F 10 1 FIG. l2 {9 p FIKQJAI This invention relates to improvements in an elevator signaling system which is especially effective for use in a .building having a plurality of elevator cars arranged in parallel for servicing a plurality of service floor landings.

A lamp incorporated in a call button unit is energized when the push button is manipulated by a passenger waiting in the hall of a floor so thatthe passenger can be informed of the fact that the hall call is registered. However, when a plurality of elevator cars are arranged in parallel for parallel operation, the passenger waiting in the hall of the floor has been unable to identify the elevator car which arrives at the floor earliest of all. This is because it has been unable, at the time at which the hall call has been registered, to foresee the arrival of the earliest elevator car at the floor originating the hall call.

Therefore, prior art arrival information means, which are disposed at individual landing portions of each floor and are energized when elevator'cars start to decelerate to stop at a specific floor, have been the sole means for passengers to know the arrival of the earliest elevator car before such elevator car arrives at the floor.

However, knowing the expected arrival of the elevator car by the energization of the arrival information means, the passengers may rush to the floor landing portion for the specific elevator car resulting in extreme confusion at this floor landing portion and those passengers who are waiting in the hall portion remote from this floor landing portion may miss the elevator car. Although indicators are disposed at the individual floor landing portions beside the arrival information means to indicate the positions of the individual elevator cars, it is not easy for the passengers to look at all of these elevator car position indicators to judge which elevator car is the earliest one.

A system for offering early information of elevator cars serving passengers waiting in the hall has been pro posed recently for overcoming the defect above described and providing better service. According to this system, operating conditions of individual elevator cars are continually detected so as to early determine the elevator car which can most efficiently respond to a hall call when such hall call is originated. In this system, guide lamps are provided at the floor landing portions of each floor besides the conventional arrival information lamps so that the passengers waiting in the hall of a floor originating a hall call can be informed of the elevator car determined to service this floor by the illumination of the corresponding guide lamp. Therefore, the passengers waiting in the hall can identify early the first arriving elevator car by the illumination of the guide lamp.

As described above, one guide lamp is disposed at the floor landing portion for each individual elevator car in the proposed system. Consider a case in which, after the determination of the hall call responding elevator car on the basis of the operating conditions of all the elevator cars, this specific elevator car is rendered incapable of servicing for the reason that it is loaded to the full capacity or is disabled. In such a case, another elevator car which should respond to the hall call must be newly selected or determined so that it services the floor landing instead of the full-loaded or disabled elevator car. Incidentally, the guide lamp associated with the elevator car rendered incapable of servicing must be deenergized and the guide lamp associated with the newly selected elevator car must be energized. Such a change in the serving elevator cars tends to occur especially when the traffic is busy. Thus, such a change gives rise to not only confusion of the passengers waiting in the hall but also disbelief of the guide lamp system, thereby reducing the marked effect of the guide lamps. Further, due to the fact that one guide lamp is provided for each individual elevator car, the system must include the control circuits and guide lamps for the individual elevator cars and is thus complex in structure and expensive. Provision of many elevator cars is required increasingly with the increase in the height and scale of buildings, and the defect pointed out in the above tends to become more marked.

It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide an elevator signaling system for use in a building having a plurality of elevator cars arranged for parallel operation in which guiding means of improved reliability are provided so that passengers waiting in the hall can be more reliably informed of an elevator car which can respond to a hall call.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a very inexpensive elevator signaling system which has simplified guiding means and simplified circuits including a hall call response determining circuit for selectively energizing the guiding means.

It is the first feature of the present invention that a plurality of elevator cars arranged for parallel operation are divided into a plurality of groups each consisting of elevator cars associated with adjoining floor landing portions and one guiding means is provided for each elevator car group.

The second feature of the present invention resides in the fact that one of the elevator car groups is determined to respond to a hall call and means for selecting the hall call responding elevator car group, that is, a hall call response determining circuit, is provided for each elevator car group.

Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing.

FIG. 1 is a schematic view showing a prior art arrangement of guide lamps;

FIGS. 2a and 2b are schematic views showing preferred arrangements of guide lamps according to the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a schematic view showing the operation of group controlled elevator cars to which the present invention is applied;

FIGS. 4 to 13 show an embodiment of the present invention for use in a 10 storied building having three elevator cars A to C arranged for parallel operation, in which;

FIG. 4 shows a circuit for detecting the positional interval between the elevator car A and the succeeding elevator car, such circuit being provided for each individual elevator car;

FIG. 5 shows a stop requesting call detecting circuit associated with the elevator car A, such circuit being also provided for each of the remaining elevator cars;

FIG. 6 shows a circuit for computing the means value of stop requesting calls for the elevator cars A to C;

3 FIG. 7 shows a reference voltage generating circuit for-supplying reference voltages to comparators shown in FIG. 8;

FIG. 8 shows a time interval estimating circuit associated with the elevator car A, such circuit being also provided for each of the remaining elevator cars;

FIG. 9 shows a hall call response determining circuit associated with the elevator car A, such circuit being also provided for each of the remaining elevator cars;

FIG. 10 shows a circuit for generating an inhibit signal after determination of the hall call responding elevator car, such circuit being provided for each floor;

' FIG. 11 shows a circuit for determining the priority order of the elevator cars in response to a hall call, such circuit being provided for each floor;

FIG. 12 shows a guiding means energizing circuit associated with the elevator car A, such circuit being also provided for each of the remaining elevator cars; and

FIG. 13 shows an arrangement of guiding means in which a guide lamp is provided for each elevator car 7 f, group according to the feature of the present invention, such guiding means being provided for each floor.

FIGS. 14 to 19 show another embodiment of the present invention for use in a l0-storied building having six parallel operating elevator cars A to F divided into two groups, one group W consisting of the elevator cars A to C and the other group Z consisting of the elevator cars D to F, in which:

FIG. '14 shows a circuit for generating a signal representing an apparent position of theelevator car group W, such circuit being also provided for the other elevator car group and for each of other apparent positions;

FIG. 15 shows a hall call response determining circuit 1 associated with the elevator car group W, such circuit being provided for the other elevator car group;

FIG. 16 showsa circuit for determining the priority order of the elevator car groups in response to a hall call, such circuit being provided for each floor;

FIG. 17 shows a circuit for generating an inhibit signal after determination of the responding elevator car group, such circuit being provided for each floor;

FIG. 18 shows a guiding means energizing circuit associated with the elevator car group W, such circuit being also provided for the other elevator car group; and

FIG. 19 shows an arrangement of guiding means associated with the elevator car group W, such means being also provided for the other elevator car group.

FIG. 20 shows schematically the manner of energization of the guide lamps in the second embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 21 shows a stop requesting call detecting circuit preferably employed in the second embodiment of the present invention so as to detect the number of stop requesting calls for the elevatorcar A, such circuit being also provided for each of the remaining elevator cars.

The general concept of the present invention will be described with reference to FIGS. 1, 2a and 2b, and in this description, guide lamps are used as guiding means.

views of floor landings. In FIGS. 1, 2a and 2b, eight elevator cars A to H are shown arranged for parallel operation.

In the prior art arrangement shown in FIG. I, eight guide lamps SA to SH are disposed at the floor landing portions for the respective elevator cars A to H. In response to a hall call, one of the elevator cars is determined to respond to this hall call and the guide lamp disposed at the floor landing portion for the selected elevator car is energized so that passengers waiting in the hall of the floor originating the hall call can identify the specific elevator car responding to the hall call. When, for example, the elevator car A is determined to service the floor originating the hall call, the guide lamp SA is energized at the floor from which the hall call is originated.

However, there may be a case in which the elevator car A which is determined to respond to the hall call cannot service the floor landing having the energized guide lamp SA for the reason that the elevator car A is full loaded or disabled. In such a case, another elevator car for serving the floor landing must be newly determined and the passengers waiting in the hall of the specific floor must be informed of the change of the arriving elevator car. Suppose, for example, that'the elevator car B is the newly determined elevator car for serving the floor landing, then the guide lamp SA must be deenergized and the guide lamp SB must now be energized. However, as described previously, this gives rise to confusion of the passengers waiting in the hall and disbelief of the guiding means and is thus undesirable.

According to the present invention, eight elevator cars A to H are divided into a plurality of groups and one guide lamp is provided for each group as shown in FIGS. 2a and 2b. Referring to FIG. 2a, the eight elevator cars A to H are divided into two groups, one consisting of the elevator cars A to D and the other consisting of the elevator cars E to H, and guide lamps SABCD and SEFGH areprovided for the respective groups. Therefore, even when the elevator car determined to serve the floor landing is changed from A to B as above described, the guide lamp SABCD can be kept in the energized state. Thus, the prior art defect can be considerably obviated.

Further, various circuits (described in detail later) constituting means for selecting the responsive elevator car group thereby energizing the corresponding signal lamp need not be provided for each elevator car and such means may merely be provided for each elevator car group. Thus, the selecting means are very simple in structure and inexpensive. Furthermore, the change of the energized guide lamps giving rise to confusion can also be completely avoided.

Referring to FIG. 2b showing another arrangement according to the present invention, eight elevator cars A to H are divided into four groups each consisting of two elevator cars and guide lamps SAB to SGH are provided for the respective groups.

In the later description, the present invention will be described with reference to a modern control process proposed for very efficiently controlling a plurality of elevator cars arranged for parallel operation. According to this control process, a plurality of parallel operating elevator carsare organically associated with one another so that all the elevator cars can be efficiently controlled. The manner of control in this control process is such that the operating conditions including the interval between the elevator cars and the number of floors at which each elevator car should stop are detected and the elevator cars are controlled so that each elevator car is spaced by the same interval from the other elevator cars and stops at the same number of floors. Further, each elevator car has its own service zone for responding to a hall call originating from this range, and this service zone is continuously variable depending on the operating conditions. Thus, a hall call originating from a floor is transmitted to the elevator car having the service zone including that floor and this elevator car is determined to respond to the hall call. That is, it is conditioned so that each elevator car responds to a hall call originating from its own service zone. 4

The service zones will be described with reference to FIG. 3. Suppose now that three elevator cars A to C are arranged to serve the floor landings of a building having ten floors, with the elevator car A moving upward from the 2nd floor, the elevator. car moving downward from the 9th floor and the elevator car C moving downward from the 2nd floor. In this case, the elevator cars A to C have the respective service zones shown by the arrows. When an up hall call is originated from the 8th floor in such a situation, this hall call is transmitted solely to the elevator car A and is not transmitted to the other elevator cars B and C since this hall call is included in the service zone of the elevator car A. Therefore, the elevator car A is determined to respondto this hall call, and this is an effective means for early determining the elevator car responding to the hall call.

The term interval" is used to include not only the physical or spatial interval between the actual or physical positions of the elevator cars but also the time inter val calculated on the basis of the number of expected stoppage of the elevator cars as well as the sum of the spatial interval and the time interval.

Further, the term position signal" is used to include not only the signal representing the the floor position or distance from the bottom terminal but also the signal representing the position forward of the physical position of the elevator car when itis moving in either direction. For example, when the elevator car is moving upward past the 3rd floor, the position signal may represent the 4th floor position when the elevator car is moving at a low speed, the 5th floor position when the elevator car is moving at an intermediate speed, and the 6th floor position when the elevator car is moving at a high speed.

FIGS. 4 to 13 show various circuits employed in an embodiment of the present invention in which it is assumed that three elevator cars A to C serve the service floor landings of a building having ten floors.

FIG. 4 shows a circuit for detecting the positional interval between the elevator cars. This circuit detects the interval between the elevator car A and the succeeding elevator car B or C.

The following symbols are used in FIG. 4:

F lUA F9UA Position signals representing the lst'to the 9th floor position respectively when the elevator car A is moving upward F2DA Fl0DA Position signals representing the 2nd to the 10th floor position respectively when the elevator car A is moving downward FlUB F9UB Position signals representing the 1st to the 9th floor position respectively when the elevator car B is moving upward FZDB FIODB Position signals representing the 2nd to the IOth floor position respectively when the elevator car B is moving downward FlUC F9UC Position signals representing the 1st to the 9th floor position respectively when the elevator car C is moving upward F2DC F10DC Position signals representing the 2nd to the 10th floor position respectively when the elevator car C is moving downward 01UA1 09UA2, 02DA1 0lODA2 OR elements llUA 19UA, 12DA I10DA INHIBIT elements r, r, Resistors da Positional interval signal representing the positional interval between the elevator car A and the succeeding elevator car It will be seen in FIG. 4 that the OR elements and IN- HIBIT elements are connected endlessly to transmit successively the position signal representing the position of the elevator car A until the transmission of this position signal is intercepted by the INHIBIT element to which the position signal representing the position of the elevator car B or C is applied. The position signals representing the positions of the elevator cars are applied through the corresponding INHIBIT elements to the resistors r and the signal representing the positional interval between the elevator cars appears across the resistor r Suppose, for example, that the elevator car A is moving upward fromthe 8th floor, the elevator car B is moving upward from the 2nd floor, and the elevator C is moving downward from the 5th floor. In this case, the elevator car B is the succeeding elevator car for the elevator car A. The position signal F8UA representing the position of the elevator car A is transmitted to the IN- HIBIT element I2UA by way of the route 08UA1 I8UA O'7UA1 I3UA 02UA1 l2UA. However, the position signal FZUB representing the position of the elevator car B is in the state 1 and is applied to the INHIBIT element I2UA by way of the route 02UA2 IZUA. Therefore, the output signal of the INHIBIT element I2UA is in the state 0 and the position signal F8UA cannot be transmitted any more. It will be understood that the output signals of the respective INHIBIT elements I8UA, I'7UA, I6UA, ISUA, I4UA and I3UA are in the state I, and these signals are applied through the associated resistors r to the resistor r, so that a signal corresponding to the interval of 6 floors appears across the resistor r,,. This signal is the interval signal da. Thus, when the resistance ratio between the resistors r and r, is selected to be r r,,, a signal proportional to the number of floors existing between the positions of the elevator cars A and B appears across the resistor r Even when the number of elevator cars is more than three, positional interval detection can be similarly easily attained by applying the position signals representing the positions of the elevator cars except the elevator car A to the OR elements 01UA2 09UA2 and 02DA2 01ODA2 respectively.

FIG. 5 shows a circuit for detecting the number of calls requesting stoppage of the elevator car A. Signals MIUA M9UA and M2DA MIODA are generated calling for stoppage of the elevator car A. When a hall call or cage call is originated calling for stoppage of the elevator car A at one of the floors, the signal corresponding to this floor takes the state -1. Resistors r and r are provided as in FIG. 4 so as to obtain a signal CA proportional to the number of calls requesting stoppage.

FIG. 6 shows a circuit for summing up the stop requesting calls for the individual elevator cars and computing the mean value of such calls. Signals CA to CC are obtained in the manner described with reference to FIG. 5. Contacts NOAl, NOA2, NOBl, NOB2, NOCl and NOC2 are opened when the elevator cars A, B and C are not in controlled operation. The circuit includes resistors R, and an operational amplifier OP, delivering an inverted output. 7

All the contacts NOAl NOC2 are in the closed position when the elevator cars A, B and C are under controlled operation. When the inputs CA, CB and CC corresponding to the respective elevator cars A, B and C are applied to the circuit shown in FIG. 6, the operational amplifier OP, delivers an output C which is given by When one of the elevator cars, for example, the elevator car A is not in controlled operation, the output C of the operational amplifier OP, is given by It will be seen that the output C of the operational amplifier OP, is the mean value of the stop requesting calls for the individual elevator cars. Even when the number of elevator cars is more than three, the mean value can be similarly easily obtained by providing a required number of imput terminals and associated elements.

FIG. 7 shows a circuit for obtaining reference voltages to be applied to comparators shown in FIG. 8. Contacts NOA3, N083 and NOC3 are in the open position when the elevator cars A, B and C are in controlled operation. Therefore, an operational amplifier OP delivers an output V which is given by The output voltage V of the operational amplifier 0P2 will have a value of, for example, 6 volts when the resistance ratio between the resistors R and R is suitably selected. When one of the elevator cars, for example, the elevator car A is not in controlled operation,

the contact NOA3 is closed and the output voltage V of the operational amplifier 0P2 is given by V, to be applied to comparators shown in FIG. 8. The reference voltages V, and V may be 5 volts and 4 volts respectively when the output voltage V of the operational amplifier 0P2 is 6 volts, while these reference voltages V, and V, may be 8.3 volts and 6.6 volts respectively when V is 10 volts. Even when the number of elevator cars is more than three, the reference voltages can be similarly easily obtained by providing a required number of resistors R and contacts.

FIG. 8 is a circuit for estimating the time interval between the elevator car A and the succeeding elevator car, and the outputs of the circuits shown in FIGS. 4 to 7 are applied to this circuit. The circuit shown in FIG. 8 comprises operational amplifiers OPAl and OPA2, comparators CMAl and CMAZ which deliver I when the sum of the two inputs is zero or positive, resistors R1, R7A, R8A and R9A, a NOT element NA, and an INHIBIT element II-l. Outputs EOA, ElA and E2A of this circuit are instruction signals for apparently advancing the position of the elevator car A from the actual position. For instance, the position of the elevator car A is apparently advanced by zero floor, one floor and two floors respectively from the actual position by the instruction signals EOA, ElA and E2A. The operational amplifier OPAl carries out substraction of the signal CA applied from the circuit shown in FIG. 5 from the signal C applied from the circuit shown in FIG. '6. Thus, the output V of the operational amplifier OPAl is given by Similarly, the output V of the operational amplifier OPA2 is given by When the ratios among the resistors R7A, R8A and R9A are suitably selected, one floor interval and one call may correspond to 1 volt and 3 volts respectively. Thus, the time interval between the elevator cars can be computed by suitably selecting the weight of the elevator car interval and the weight of the call. The equation (4) can be expressed as It will be readily seen from the equation (5) that the first member in the equation (5) is equal to the second member and V is given by V -K -dawhen the number of stop requesting calls for each elevator car is equal to the mean value of such calls. However, K CA K,/3(CA+CB+CC) 3 volts when the number of stop requesting calls for the elevator car A is greater by, for example, one than the mean value. On the other hand, K CA K /3(CA+CB+CC) 3 volts when the number of stop requesting calls for the elevator car A is smaller by one than the mean value. It will thus be seen that the interval between the elevator cars includ es the time interval taking into consideration the number of calls.

Suppose now that there is a six-floor interval between the elevator car A and the succeeding elevator car and the number of stop requesting calls for the elevator car A is greater by one than the mean value, then V is given by V +3 volts -6 volts 3 volts. Suppose then that V,(= volts) and V 4 volts) are applied to the respective comparators CMAI and CMA2 as the reference voltage signals. In this case, the output of the comparator CMAI is l due to the fact that 3 volts and +5 volts are applied thereto, and the output of the comparator CMA2 is also l due to the fact that 3 volts and +4 volts are applied thereto. Thus, the position advancing instruction signal EZA takes the state I, the position advancing instruction signal ElA appearing from the INHIBIT element IH takes the state 0, and the position advancing instruction signal EOA appearing from the NOT element NA takes the state 0. 7

When V0p 2 5 volts, the output of the comparator CMAl is I due to the fact that 5 volts and +5 volts are applied thereto, while the output of the comparator CMA2 is 0 due to the fact that 5 volts and +4 volts are applied thereto. It will be understood that one of the position advancing instruction signals EOA, EIA and E2A is selectively delivered from the circuit depending on the result of estimation of the time interval between the elevator cars by the comparators CMAI and CMA2.

FIGS. 9 to 11 show circuits for determining the service zone of the elevator car A on the basis of the signals including the position signals and position advancing instruction signals and judging as to whether the elevator car A should respond to a hall call. More precisely, FIG. 9 shows a circuit for determining as to whether the elevator car A should respond to a hall call and such circuit is provided for each elevator car. FIG.

10 shows a circuit for generating inhibit signals after determination of an elevator car responding to a hall call and such circuit is provided for each floor. FIG. 11 shows a circuit for determining the priority order of elevator cars responding to a hall call and such circuit is provided for each floor.

The circuit shown in FIG. 9 includes AND elements AIUAI to A9UA4 and AZDAI to A10DA4, OR elements, 0lUA3 to 09UA5 and 02DA3 to 010DA5, and INHIBIT elements INlUAl to IN9UA3 and IN2DA1 to INIODAS. Inhibit signals 1U to 9U and 2D to 100 are applied from the circuit shown in FIG. 11 although only one signal 2U is shown in FIG. 11. Inhibit signals Ml U to M9U and M2D to MIIID are applied from the circuit shown in FIG. 10 in response to the application of signals RylUA2 to Ry9UC2 and Ry2DA2 to RylODCZ (described later) to respective OR elements OlU to 09U and 02D to 010D. Hall call signals HClU to HC9U and HCZD to HC10D are originated from the lst to the 9th floor to call for upward movement of the elevator cars and from the 2nd to the 10th floor to call for downward movement of the elevator cars respectively. Response determination signals LIUA to L9UA and L2DA to L10DA appear from the circuit shown in FIG. 9.

Suppose now that the elevator car A is moving upward from the 2nd floor, while the preceding elevator car B is moving downward from the 10th floor, and the position advancing instruction signals E0 for these two elevator cars A and B are generated. It is supposed fur- 10 ther that the elevator car C is moving downward from the 5th floor.

Due to the fact that the elevator car A is situated at the 2nd floor and the position advancing instruction signal EOA therefor is in the state I, an output signal or 1 appears from the AND element AZUAl to be applied to the INHIBIT element IN2UA2 through the OR elements 02UA3 and O2UA5. The output signal of the INHIBIT element IN2UA2 is transmitted to the IN- HIBIT element INJUAI (not shown) associated with the 3rd floor, thence successively to the corresponding INHIBIT elements associated with the 4th to the 7th floor. Finally, the output signal of the INHIBIT element IN7UA2 associated with the 7th floor is applied to the INHIBIT element IN8UA1 to be applied to the IN- HIBIT element lNlODAl by way of the route IN8UAI 08UA5 IN8UA2 IN9UA 09UA5 IN- 9UA2 INlIlDAl. V

In the meantime, the output signal of the OR element 02UA3 is applied to the OR element 02UA4 to produce the inhibit signal 2U by the priority order determining circuit shown in FIG. 11. The output signal of the OR element 02UA3 provides one of the inputs to the OR element 02UA4 associated with the elevator car A, but the other input is not connected to the OR element 02UA4. The output of the OR element 02UA4 is connected to the OR element 02UB4 and INHIBIT element lN2UB2 associated with the elevator car B, and the output of the OR element 02UB4 is connected to the OR element 02UC4 and INHIBIT element IN- 2UC2 associated with the elevator car C. Therefore, the INHIBIT elements IN2UA2, IN2UB2 and IN2UC2 associated with the respective elevator cars A, B and C are placed in the inhibit position after the priority order has been established in the order of the elevator cars A, B and C. Thus, the elevator cars A, B and C respond to a hall call in this order. Further, the output signal of the OR element 02UC4 provides the inhibit signal 2U thereby placing the INHIBIT elements INZUAI, IN- 2UBll and IN2UC1 associated with the respective elevator cars A, B and C in the inhibit state. In this description, the input signal to the INHIBIT element IN- 2UCI associated with the elevator car C is inhibited and the output signal of the INHIBIT element IN2UC1 is 0. Similarly, due to the fact that the elevator car B is moving downward from the 10th floor, the inhibit signal 10D is in the state 1 thereby placing the INHIBIT element IN10DA1 associated with the elevator car A in the inhibit state and the output signal of the INHIBIT element INlODAl is in the state 0. Therefore, the output signals of the INHIBIT elements IN3UA3 to IN- 9UA3 associated with the elevator car A are in the state I, and the service zone of the elevator car A in the above situation ranges from the 3rd to the 9th floor.

Suppose that both the elevator cars A and B are moving upward from the 2nd floor and the elevator car C is moving downward from the lOth floor. In this case, the position advancing instruction signals EOA, B0B and ECG take the state I. In such a case too, 0 appears from the OR elements 02UA3 and 02UB3 as will be readily understood from the above description. It will be seen in the circuit shown in FIG. 11, the output signal or I appearing from the OR element 02UA3 associated with the elevator car A is applied through the OR element 02UA4 to the INHIBIT element INZUBZ associated with the elevator car B to place this INHIBIT element in the inhibit state. Therefore, the output signal established in the order of the elevator cars A, B and C andv these elevator cars respond to a hall call in this order. This priority order may be determined in combination with the dispatching order of the elevator cars when these elevator cars exist at the dispatching floor orbottom terminal such as the lobby.

The response determination signals LIUA to L9UA and LZDA to L10DA in FIG. 9 are applied through self-holding amplifier elements such as thyristors RlUA to R9UA and RZDA to RIODA to energize relays RylUA to Ry9UA and Ry2DA to RylODA respectively'in a circuit'shown in FIG. 12 for energizing signaling means. The relay contacts of the relays RylUA to Ry9UA and Ry2DA to RylDA are selectively closed to decelerate the responding elevator car so as to stop same at the specific floor.

FIG. 13 shows an arrangement of guiding means which is one of the features of the present invention. The guiding means comprises a guide lamp provided at each floor for each group of the elevator cars; In this arrangement, the elevator cars A, B and C are dividied into v two groups, one consisting of the elevator cars A and B and the other consisting of the elevator car C, and two guide lamps S9UAB and S9UC associated with the 9th floor are shown provided for the respective elevator car groups. For the sake-of simplicity, FIG. 13 shows only the guiding means disposed at the 9th floor to indicate upward movement of the responding elevator cars, but similar arrangements are provided at the other floors. The'guide lamps S9UAB and S9UC are respectively energized in response to the closure of the contacts Ry9UAl to Ry9UCI of the relays Ry9UA to Ry9UC (FIG. 12) associated with the elevator cars A, B and C. Therefore, the guide lamp S9UAB is energized when one of the elevator cars A and B responds to an up hall call originating from the 9th floor, and the guide lamp S9UC is energized when the elevator car C responds to such hall call.

Suppose, for example, that the service zone of the elevator car A includes upward movement from the 7th to the 9th floor and downward movement from the 10th to the 8th floor, that is, the output signals of the INHIBIT elements IN7UA3 to IN9UA3 and INl0DA3 to IN8DA3 in FIG. 9 are in the state I, and an up hall call is originated from the 9th floor. In this case, the hall call signal HC9U appears and the two inputs are applied to the AND element A9UA4 associated with the elevator car A in FIG. 9 so that an output signal appears from the AND element A9UA4. That is, the response determination signal L9UA appears from the AND element A9UA4 to energize the relay Ry9UA through the self-holding amplifier element or thyristor R9UA in FIG. 12 (arc extinguish circuit is not shown). Due to the energization of the relay R9UA, the signal Ry9UA2 is applied to the OR element 09U in FIG. 10 to provide the inhibit-signal M9U which is applied as the inhibit input to the INHIBIT elements IN9UA3, IN- 9UB3 and IN9UC3 in FIG. 9. The self-holding amplifier element or thyristor R9UA holds itself so that the guide lamp S9UAB is kept energized by the contact Ry- 9UA] of the energized relay Ry9UA. Thus, the elevator car A responds to the up hall call originating from the 9th floor. In order to prevent the remaining elevator cars from responding to this hall call, the inhibit signal M9U is applied to the INHIBIT elements IN9UA3 to IN9UC3. The passenger originating the up hall call at the 9th floor is informed that one of the elevator cars A and B serves the 9th floor landing and moves to the floor landing of the elevator cars A and B. When the elevator car A reaches the deceleration position beneath the 9th floor, the elevator car A is controlled by the signal of the relay Ry9UA so as to be decelerated to stop at the 9th floor. (Control circuits are not shown.) The self-holding amplifier element R9UA is released from the self-holding state when the elevator car A starts to decelerate or stops at the 9th floor.

The present invention has been described with reference to' the modern elevator control process. It will be understood from the above description that the same guide lamp is kept energized in FIG. 13 even when the elevator car responding to the hall call is changed from the elevator car A to the elevator car B. Therefore, confusion of passengers waiting in the hall due to the change of the illuminating guide lamp can be reduced to a minimum and the reliability of the guiding means can be improved. Further, theguiding means is inexpensive due to the fact that the number of the guide lamps can be reduced. This effect becomes more 1 marked with the increase in the number of elevator cars arranged for parallel operation.

Another embodiment of the present invention will be described with'reference to FIGS. 4 to 8 and 14 to 20. In this embodiment, a guide lamp is provided silimarly for each elevator car group and an elevator car group responding to a hall call is determined unlike the preceding embodiment in which an elevator car responding to a hall call is determined. Therefore, hall call responding elevator car group selecting means such as a response determining circuit and a guiding means driving circuit are provided for each elevator car group. In the later description, it is assumed that six elevator cars A to F are arranged to serve the service floor landings of a building having ten floors, and the elevator cars A to C constitute one group named W, while the elevator cars D to F constitute the other group named Z.

At first, position advancing instruction signals EOA, EIA and E2A for the elevator car A are obtained by the circuits shown in FIGS. 4 to 8 as in the preceding embodiment.

Since the number of the elevator cars in this embodiment is six, it is necessary to suitably vary the circuits as described below. Further, due to the fact that the elevator car group responds to a hall call, each elevator car can only detect cage calls.

In the positional interval detecting circuit for detecting the positional interval between the elevator car A Y and succeeding elevator car shown in FIG. 4, the posi- In the mean value computing circuit shown in FIG. 6, the inputs are the signals CCA to CCF representative of the cage calls registered in the respective elevator cars A to F and these signals are derived from the circuit shown in FIG. 5. Further, additional resistors R and additional contacts NOD7 to NOF2 associated with the elevator cars D to F are provided. Thus, the output CC of the operational amplifier P1 represents the mean value of cage calls requesting stoppage.

Similarly, additional contacts NOD3 to NOF3 and additional resistors R2 must be provided in the reference voltage generating circuit shown in FIG. 7.

In the time interval estimating circuit associated with the elevator car A shown in FIG. 8, the inputs are the signal CC representing the mean value of cage calls and the signal CCA representing the number of cage calls registered in the elevator car A.

By varying the-circuits shown in FIGS. 4 to 8 in the manner above described, it is possible to obtain the position advancing instruction signals EOA to E3A as in the preceding embodiment.

FIGS. 14 to 17 show circuits for establishing the service zones of the elevator car group W consisting of the elevator cars A to C and judging as to whether this group should respond to a hall call.

FIG. 14 shows an example of an apparent position signal generating circuit associated with the elevator car group W for generating a signal which represents that the apparent position of this group is the second floor upward. Similar circuits are required for other apparentpositions and for the other elevator car group. As shown in FIG. 14, position signals FlUA to FZDC and position advancing instruction signals EOA to E2C are applied to respective AND elements A2UA1 to A2UC3 associated with the elevator cars A to C. Therefore, when, for example, the elevator car A is moving upward from the 1st floor and the positionadvancing instruction signal ElA appears, an output or 1 appears from the AND element A2UA2 and an apparent position signal f2UW representing that the apparent position of the elevator car group W is the second floor upward appears from an OR element O2UW3.

FIG. 15 shows a circuit for judging as to whether the elevator car group W should respond to a hall call, and such circuit is also provided for the other elevator car group. This circuit is entirely similar to the circuit portion disposed in the stages after the OR elements 01UA5 to 09UA5 and 02DA5 to OIODAS in the hall call response determining circuit associated with the elevator car A shown in FIG. 9. In the preceding embodiment, the apparent position signal for the elevator car A is detected in the circuit portion disposed in the stages before the OR elements O1UA3 to O9UA3 and O2DA3 to OlODA3 in FIG. 9, but in this embodiment, such signal is detected by the circuit shown in FIG. 14. The circuit shown in FIG. 15 establishes the hall call responding service zones for the elevator car group W and determines as to whether this elevator car group should respond to a hall call originating from the service zones.

FIG. 16 shows a circuit for determining the priority order of the elevator car groups in responding a hall call and this circuit corresponds to the circuit shown in FIG. 11. In this embodiment, the priority order of the elevator car groups responding to a hall call is determined instead of the priority order of the elevator cars.

FIG. 17 shows a circuit for generating an inhibit sig nal after the determination of the call responding eleva I4 tor car group and this circuit corresponds to the circuit shown in FIG. 10.

After the determination of the elevator car group which should respond to a hall call by the circuits shown in FIGS. 14 to 17, circuits shown in FIGS. 18 and 19 energize guiding means for guiding passengers waiting in the hall toward the responding elevator car group.

FIG. 18 shows a circuit for energizing guiding means associated with the elevator car group W, and the same arrangement is provided for the other elevator car group. This circuit corresponds to the circuit shown in FIG. 12 in the preceding embodiment. When the elevator car group W responds to hall calls, corresponding relays RylUW to Ry9UW and Ry2DW to RylODW are energized by associated self-holding amplifier elements RlUW to R9UW and RZDW to RlODW.

FIG. 19 shows an arrangement of guiding means associated with the elevator car group W, and the same arrangement is provided for the other elevator car group. FIG. 19 corresponds to FIG. 13 in the preceding embodiment. Guide lamps SlUW to S9UW and SZDW to S10DW are provided so that passengers waiting in the halls can be informed that they are served by one of the elevator cars A to C in the group W.

Operation of the second embodiment of the present invention will now be described.

Suppose now that the elevator car A is moving upward from the 2nd floor and the position advancing instruction signal EOA appears. In response to the application of both the position signal FZUA and the position advancing instruction signal EOA to the AND element A2UA1, an outputof 1 appears from the AND element A2UA1 to be applied to the OR element O2UW3 and the signal fZUW is applied through the OR element O2UW2 and INHIBIT element IN2UW2 to the INHIBIT element IN2UW3 in FIG. 15. Further, the output of the INHIBIT element IN2UW2 to the INHIBIT element IN3UW1 (not shown) associ' ated with the 3rd floor. Suppose that the preceding elevator car D is situated at the 8th floor, the output of the INHIBIT element IN3UW1 is transmitted through the successive INHIBIT elements until it is applied to the INHIBIT. element IN7UW2 associated with the 7th floor, and the output of the INHIBIT element IN7UW2' is applied to the INHIBIT element INSUWI. In the meantime, the apparent position signal tZUW passes through the OR elements O2UW1 and O2UZ1 in FIG. 16 to provide the inhibit signal 2U for the elevator car groups W and Z. This inhibit signal 2U is applied to the INHIBIT element INZUWI and to the INHIBIT element IN2UZ1 (not shown). Due to the fact that the elevator car D is ready to move upward from the 8th floor, the apparent position signal f8UZ for the group Z takes the state I and the inhibit signal 8U appears in the circuit similar to that shown in FIG. 16 to be applied to the INHIBIT element INSUWI. Therefore, the service zone of the elevator car A in the group W is determined so that it responds to up hall calls originating from the 2nd to the 7th floor. The service zones of the elevator cars B and C are similarly determined by the circuits common to the group W. Thus, the hall call responding service zones of the group W consisting of the elevator cars A to C can be determined.

Suppose that an up hall call HCZU is originated from the 2nd floor in the state in which a portion of the service zones of the group W ranges from the 2nd to the is applied 7th floor as above described. In this case, an output of 1 appears from the AND element A2UW in FIG. 15 to provide the response determination signal L2UW.'This signal LZUW is applied to the self-holding amplifier element RZUW thereby energizing the relay Ry2UW. Due to the energization of the relay Ry2UW, the relay contact Ry2UW! is closed in FIG. 19 to energize the guide lamp SZUW so that the passengers waiting in the hall are informed that one of the elevator cars in the group W responds to the up hall call originating from the 2nd floor. Further, the inhibit signal M2U appearing from the OR element O2U shown in FIG. 17 is applied to'the INHIBIT element IN8UW3 associated with the group W and to the INHIBIT element IN8UZ3 (not shown) associated with the group Z in FIG. 15 so that one of the two groups responds solely to the hall call.

The relay Ry2UW is continuouslyenergized to provide the signal for the group W consisting of the elevator cars A to C. The self-holding amplifier element R2UW holds itself until one of the elevator cars A to C serves the 2nd floor originating the up hall call. That when the elevator car A is full loaded, for example, and passes the 2nd floor without stopping at this floor, one of the remaining elevator cars B and C in the same group services the floor originating the hall call.

FIG. is a chart for facilitating the understanding of the second embodiment of the present invention,

and symbols A are used to illustrate the service zones of the groups W and Z by way of example. The service zones of the group W include upward movement from the 4th to the 6th floor, downward movement from the 4th to the 2nd floor, and downward movement from the 10th to the 8th floor, while the service zones of the .group Z include upward movement from the 1st to the 3rd floor, upward movement from the 7th to the 9th floor, and downward movement from the 7th to the 5th floor.

When an up hall call is originated from the 4th floor in such a state, the group W is instructed to respond this hall call and the corresponding guide lamp is energized to guide passengers waiting in the hall toward the floor landing portions for the group W. Consider a case in which one of the elevator cars in the group W situated adjacent to the floor originating the hall call cannot serve this floor due to the full-loaded condition or any other conditions although this elevator car has been instructed to serve the floor. Even in such a case, the same guide lamp can be kept energized due to the fact that the hall call signal is applied to the circuits associated with the remaining elevator cars in the same group.

In the second embodiment of the present invention, the hall call response determining circuit, guiding means driving circuit and other circuits shown in FIGS.

14 to 19 are provided for each elevator car group. Thus, the system is very simple in structure and inexpensive compared with prior art systems in which such circuits are provided for each elevator car. For instance, the costs'of the control circuits are by about 40 percent less than heretofore when six elevator cars are 'bodiment.

In the second embodiment of the present invention, the signal representing the number of cage calls requesting stoppage of each elevator car is solely derived from the circuit shown in FIG. 5. This is because hall calls are not applied to each individual elevator car but to the elevator car group and the stop requesting hall calls cannot be detected. However, due to the fact that hall calls are applied to the individual elevator car groups, calls including hall calls can be detected by a circuit as shown in FIG. 21. This circuit is associated with the elevator car A. Cage call signals CIA to ClOA registered in the elevator car A are applied to respective resistors r, and hall call signals MIUW to M9UW and M2DW to M10DW are applied to respective resistors r, associated with the elevator car group W including the elevator car A which is instructed to respond. Since the elevator car group consists of the three elevator cars, the resistances of the resistors r, and r must be selected to give the relation r, =r /3. In other words, the total number of hall calls applied to the responding elevator car group W is equally divided into one-third so that the divided hall calls can be applied to each individual elevator car.

It will be understood from the foregoing description that, in the elevator signaling system according to the present invention, a guide lamp is provided at each floor for each elevator car group so that passengers waiting in the hall of one of the floors can identify the elevator car servicing such floor, and various circuits for controlling the operation of the elevator cars are provided for each elevator car group. Thus, the elevator signaling system is very simple in structure and inexpensive. Further, by virtue of the fact that the necessity for changing the illuminating guide lamp due to the change of the elevator car servicing the floor can be reduced or completely eliminated, the reliability of the elevator signaling system can be improved, and very satisfactory service can be offered to the passengers waiting in the hall.

The present invention is in no way limited to the embodiments described hereinbefore and is similarly effectively applicable to a building having more floors and more elevator cars divided into a larger number of groups.

The embodiments of the present invention have been described with reference to control means in which, in order to attain efficient operation of elevator cars arranged in parallel, means for detecting the interval between the elevator cars, means for detecting the number of stop requesting calls and other means are provided so as to control the elevator cars which are organically associated with one another. However, the present invention is in no way limited to the control means illustrated in the drawing. For instance, the circuits shown in FIGS. 4 to 8 for obtaining the position advancing instruction signals EOA to 53A may be eliminated. In such a case, the position signals FZUA to FZUC representing the positions of the respective elevator cars A to C may be directly applied to the OR element O2UW3 shown in FIG. 14 so as to obtain the position signal representing the apparent position of the group W.

Further, although theelevator car or elevator car group which should respond to a hall call is determined on the basis of the service zones, the present invention stance, the elevator car which is nearest to the floor originating a hall call may be primarily determined to respond to the hall call.

In the embodiments of the present invention, the guide lamps associated with the group responding to hall calls are energized in response to appearance of the hall calls. However, the guide lamps need not be energized in response to the hall calls and the guide lamps included in the service zones of the associated elevator car group may be continuously energized irrespective of origination of hall calls. For example, the AND elements AlUW to A9UW and A2DW to A10DW in FIG. may be eliminated and the output signals of the IN- HlBlT elements lN1UW3 to IN9UW3 and lN2DW3 to lNl0DW3 may be directly applied to energize the guide lamps. Further, the guide lamps may be energized with a predetermined delay time after origination of hall calls.

What is claimed is:

1. An elevator signaling system for use in a building having a plurality of elevator cars arranged in parallel for serving a plurality of service floor landings, comprising means for selecting one group of the elevator cars which can respond to a hall call among a plurality of elevator car groups in response to origination of the hall call, and guiding means adapted to be actuated in response to the application of the output of said selecting means, said guiding means being disposed at each floor landing and provided for each elevator car group.

2. An elevator signaling system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said means for selecting the elevator car group that can respond to a hall call includes means for identifying the elevator car which can respond to the hall call and means for actuating the guiding means associated with the elevator car group including said identified elevator car in response to the application of the output of said identifying means.

3. An elevator signaling system as claimed in claim 2, wherein said means for identifying the elevator car that can respond to a hall call includes means for establishing service zones of individual elevator cars.

4. An elevator signaling system as claimed in claim 2, wherein said means for identifying the elevator car that can respond to a hall call includes means associated with each elevator car for determining the selective response to a hall call.

5. An elevator signaling system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said means for selecting one of the elevator car groups which can respond to a hall call includes, for each car group, means for setting group response conditions consisting of responsive conditions of all the elevator cars belonging to the same elevator car group, means for detecting coincidence between the floor originating a hall call and the responsive conditions of said group response condition setting means, and means for actuating said guiding means associated with the elevator car group corresponding to the output of said coincidence detecting means.

6. An elevator signaling system as claimed in claim 1, wherein said means for selecting one of the elevator car groups which can respond to a hall call includes means for setting sercice zones of each elevator car group, means for detecting coincidence between the floor originating a hall call and the service zones set by said service zone setting means, and means for actuating said guiding means associated with the elevator car group corresponding to the output of said coincidence detecting means.

7. An elevator signaling system as claimed in claim 6, wherein said means for setting the service zones of each elevator car group includes means associated with each car group for delivering a position signal of the same car group in response to the application of the position signals representing the positions of the elevator cars in the same group, and means associated with each car group for detecting the interval between the output signal of said position signal generating means associated with the same group and the respective output signals of said position signal generating means associated with the other car groups.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2100736 *Jul 16, 1935Nov 30, 1937Westinghouse Elec Elevator CoElevator signaling system
US3376953 *Dec 10, 1963Apr 9, 1968Hitachi LtdElevator plural car system including means to select one group of cars as the active group
US3467223 *Feb 11, 1966Sep 16, 1969Westinghouse Electric CorpConveyor system for elongated structures
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4064971 *May 3, 1976Dec 27, 1977Hitachi, Ltd.Elevator service information apparatus
US5239142 *May 6, 1991Aug 24, 1993Kone Elevator GmbhSelection of an elevator for service based on passenger location and elevator travel time
EP0456265A2 *May 10, 1991Nov 13, 1991KONE Elevator GmbHProcedure for the selection of an elevator in an elevator group
Classifications
U.S. Classification187/398
International ClassificationB66B3/02, B66B1/18, B66B3/00
Cooperative ClassificationB66B3/02, Y02B50/122, B66B1/18
European ClassificationB66B1/18, B66B3/02