The Truss of Escalator Steps

escalator steps

The Truss of Escalator Steps

Escalators are a type of moving staircase used to transport passengers between floors in public buildings. They’re often used in subway stations and other mass pedestrian areas.

The steps on an escalator form a continuous loop of one-piece aluminum or stainless steel. They are guided by a system of pulleys and motors.


Escalators are mechanical devices that move people between floors or levels in subways, buildings and other mass transit areas. They are powered by an electric motor that rotates a pair of chains looped around two pairs of gears. The chain loops are encased in a metal structure called a truss, which also connects the upper and lower landing platforms.

Unlike moving sidewalks, which have solid or jointed treads that can go at any angle, escalators are generally straight and can only go at a maximum of 15 degrees. They are primarily used in enclosed areas, such as airports, where people need to move moderately long distances in a short time.

There are many different types of escalators, but the most common is the step type. Most escalators have metal steps, but some old ones had wooden steps.

Most escalators are powered by an electric motor that rotates two pairs of chains around a truss. The truss is a large metal structure that encases the entire mechanism and connects the upper and lower landing platforms. The chains and gears in the truss pull each set of steps along on tracks and create a level platform at both the top and bottom.

The steps themselves are solid, one piece die-cast aluminum (aluminum shaped in a mold using pressure). They are sometimes fitted with rubber mats to reduce slippage and yellow demarcation lines may be added to indicate their edges.

On modern escalators, the treads and risers of each step are cleated to resemble ribbed patterns. This gives each step a unique appearance. The treads and risers are also usually arranged so that the edges of each step fit into grooves in the comb plates on the top and bottom landing platforms.

These grooves provide a smooth, rounded surface that is easy to grip on to avoid falling while walking up the escalator. They are also a good place for small, light objects to be caught, so keep loose clothing clear of the escalator’s steps or high enough off them that it won’t get trapped.

In addition to the steps themselves, escalators have a handrail that moves courtesy of a series of wheels connected to a drive gear that rotates on a chain. The handrails also have a special guide system that is designed to help passengers move safely along the escalator.


An escalator is a type of stairway that allows people to ascend or descend between floors in a building. It consists of a motor-driven chain of steps that are guided by a track system in a continuous loop. Escalators are used in places where elevators would be impractical, such as department stores and shopping malls.

There are many different types of escalators. They all have different designs, dimensions, and safety features. These factors, as well as the physical requirements of the area where they will be installed, determine the design of an escalator.

One of the most common escalator designs is the step type. It has metal steps that rise or fall and flatten out as they move down. Older escalators had wooden steps.

Another type of escalator is the sliding type. These escalators have two sets of tracks. These tracks are connected to the front and back of each step. The lower set of tracks converge with the upper set of tracks at the bottom landing. This enables the steps to pass through a curved section of the track without becoming stuck. The front and back of each step then assumes a staircase configuration, which helps them travel around the bend without falling.

Some of the safer features that can be found on a sliding type escalator are:

Missing step detectors (sometimes called “level-step switches”) are often located near the combplate. These sensors will turn the escalator off if no steps are seen after a predetermined number of seconds. These sensors can be either optical or physical and are designed to detect an unlevel step before it hits the combplate.

These can help prevent passengers from falling off the escalator and hitting escalator steps their head or other parts of their body. A handrail also moves along the tracks, which provides handholding support for passengers as they climb or descend.

Some of the more modern escalators have an infrared sensor that is located near the top and bottom of the steps. This sensor can detect an unlevel step and will activate the escalator’s emergency braking system to stop the steps before they hit a passenger. Other safety features include:


The truss of an escalator is a metal structure that extends between two floors. It houses the motor and chain system that moves the stair steps. The truss is also where the tracks are housed and where the handrails rest.

The vertical members of the truss are in tension, while the diagonal members are in compression. The exact arrangement of forces is determined by the type of truss and the direction of bending.

For straight members, these forces are in equilibrium with each other. For curved members, the resulting forces and moments aren’t in equilibrium because the joints between the members change the relationship between the member’s axes.

As a result, the total force in each direction is less than the sum of all the individual forces and moments. This is called a Statically Indeterminate Structure (SI).

There are many factors that affect the design of an escalator. These include physical requirements, location, traffic patterns, safety considerations and aesthetics.

In general, escalators are used in high-traffic areas such as malls and shopping centers. They typically feature a 30 degrees inclination for maximum comfort and safety.

Escalators also have moving handrails to help passengers keep pace with the movement of the stair steps. They have key-operated switches at both upper and lower landings, which can be used to start or stop the escalator.

The stair steps themselves are solid one-piece die-cast aluminum or steel, usually with rubber mats fixed to their surfaces. Yellow demarcation lines are sometimes added to clearly indicate their edges.

Each step’s front and back long edges have grooves that fit the comb plates of the top and bottom landing platforms. This configuration is designed to reduce the gap between the stair and the platform to a minimum, which prevents objects from getting caught in it.

Cleated risers and treads are standard on most escalator models manufactured after 1950. They are made of a durable material and are finished to harmonize with the comb plates on the stair’s top and bottom landing platforms and the succeeding steps in the escalator chain.


When escalator passengers move along the steps, they can grab onto a handrail that keeps them from falling off. This is a very important safety feature that should be maintained regularly to avoid accidents and injuries.

Handrails are made of rubber or a combination of synthetic textile and metal, depending on the escalator type. They are also designed to last a long time.

The handrail is shaped like a belt and runs along a chain attached to the main drive gear of an escalator. This ensures that the handrail and the stairs operate at the same speed in both directions of travel.

There are four distinct sections that make up the railing: a “slider” layer that allows it to move smoothly along its track, a “tension member” that provides it with tensile strength and flexibility, a “tension wire” that connects these two layers, and a chemically treated rubber that connects them.

Each of these four components has its own purpose and should be carefully examined when performing escalator steps maintenance on an escalator. A defective handrail could contribute to an accident, which would be a serious personal injury issue.

Escalator handrails should be checked and replaced when they become damaged or if they are no longer able to hold up the weight of passengers. This is especially important when it comes to children and others who might not be able to hold the handrail on their own.

The handrail should also be cleaned often, because it can accumulate dirt and grime that can contaminate the area around it. This can be particularly true if it is in an enclosed area, such as a subway station or other high-traffic environment.

This can result in a lot of people getting sick or even dying, because of the bacteria and other microorganisms that are trapped inside. So a handrail that is not properly cleaned can cause an increased risk of infection, making it more likely that someone will be injured on the escalator.

If you or a loved one has been injured while riding an escalator, you should contact a personal injury lawyer to find out what your options are. This can include filing a claim for compensation.