Types of ropeway

General information about types of ropeway

Fixed grip installations

Surface lift

Fixed grip installations are types of ropeway whose grip is permanently clamped to the rope and is not removed from the rope in the station.


Draglifts have a long history and are the most widely used across the world. They can operate in almost any weather condition and are characterized by low maintenance costs. They are especially popular in smaller ski resorts for short and flat slopes. In large and small ski resorts they are primarily used by ski schools for their beginner areas. 


Fixed grip chairlifts

Fixed Grip Chairlifts

Fixed grip chairlifts have also been in use for decades and are often chosen for their robust engineering, long service life and relatively low investment costs. Today, fixed grip chairlifts are mainly provided for 2 and 4 passengers.

Fixed Grip Chairlifts

Reversible gondola ropeways

Pulsed Gondola ropeways

Pulsed gondola ropeways are also fixed-grip installations. They operate with one or more sets of vehicles lined up one after another. As the sets pass through the stations, the rope speed slows or the system may even stop. Pulsed Gondola ropeways operate in both the summer and winter seasons and because of their limited transport capacity are suitable for short ropeways. 

Pulsed Gondola ropeways

Detachable installations

Detachable chairlift

Detachable installations are characterized by the ability to detach the vehicles in the stations from the rope. This enables a higher speed on the line, a lower speed in the station and makes boarding and deboarding more comfortable for the passengers. As a result, a significantly higher transport capacity as well as greater comfort for the passengers can be achieved. Detachable installations have been on the market since the 80s and are considered to be the “state-of-the-art” technology of modern ropeway systems.

Detachable Chairlift

Detachable chairlift are representing the most popular, comfortable and fastest transport system for winter sports enthusiasts. The bubbles protect skiers against any weather condition. They can be taken down at any time during the drive. Moreover they are available in different colors to offer a pleasant view even in bad weather conditions. In cold temperatures the seat heating warms the bench to offer a more comfortable ride.

Detachable chairlifts

Monocable gondola lift

Monocable Detachable Gondola Lifts

Monocable detachable gondola lifts have one rope acting as carrying and hauling rope at the same time. The cabins are available in different designs, e.g., rectangular or round, and always have an aluminum frame. The large windows offer passengers a panoramic view. The seats can also be provided with heating. The cabins of this type of installation transport up to 10 passengers per cabin. In addition to classic winter sports tourism, these lifts are increasingly in demand for alternative purposes, such as transport to tourist sights, urban commuting, and as attractions in themselves.

Detachable gondola lifts

Combination lift Telemix

Telemix: combined detachable chairlift and gondola lift

Telemix is the name given to what is today a combination of two vehicle types in one installation system - chairs and gondolas. This type of installation combines the advantages of both ropeway systems. Experienced skiers may prefer the comfortable chairs as they don’t have to take off their skis. On the other hand, beginners, children or non-skiers enjoy the gondolas more.


Tricable gondola lifts Eisgratbahn

Bicable (2S) & Tricable (3S) Gondola lifts

These detachable ropeway systems take their names from the number of ropes they use. A bicable gondola lift has a carrying and a hauling rope. A tricable gondola lift has two carrying ropes and one hauling rope. 3S installations can achieve a transport capacity of over 5,000 passengers per hour and a speed up to 7 m/s – so they are able to transport many satisfied passengers. These systems are an attractive alternative for urban transportation because of their low energy consumption, high transport capacities, highest standard of operating safety, the possibility of an extremely wide span between towers and the fact that they perform extremely well in windy conditions - even at high wind speeds of over 100 km/h.

Bicable (2S) & Tricable (3S) Gondola lifts


Aerial tramways

Aerial tramways

Aerial tramways are very attractive ropeway systems. They are ideal for extremely steep terrain, provide high levels of availability and good stability in wind. Aerial tramways have one or two cabins running to and fro between the stations either on a hauling rope on one or two track ropes, or with just a single hauling rope providing the traction. The largest cabins for aerial tramways can accommodate up to 200 people.

Aerial tramways

Ropehauled systems on tracks

Funiculars Innsbruck


Funiculars run on tracks and are mainly used to overcome altitude differences. Car capacity varies as individual cars can be combined to form train sets. Funiculars are the fastest ropeway systems: with line speeds of up to 14 m/s and high levels of availability, they are often used as public transportation means in cities.



MiniMetro®: Automatic people mover 
The cable-drawn automatic people mover is a detachable ropeway system on rails for both short and medium distance operations. It is perfectly suitable for public transportation, for example as a connection to airports, in towns and small cities for different transit systems like park and ride or busy locations such as shopping malls. This system offers outstanding flexibility for integration within the already existing urban infrastructure.


Inclined elevators Innsbruck

Inclined elevators

Inclined elevators employ the same basic technology as vertical elevators. They are the perfect system for straight lines over short distances. These systems are fully automatic and there is no need for operating personnel.

Inclined elevators

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