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Canny Elevator’s 20 Years of “Rapid-Flying” Development

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The opening performance at Canny Elevator’s 20th anniversary celebration

A new test tower helps manufacturer celebrate anniversary.

When you drive west from Shanghai by Expressway G50, an impressive test tower comes into view, a striking landmark that stands elegantly by Lake Fenhu, like a slender knight overlooking the well-planned Canny Elevator Co., Ltd. premises and the residential buildings around them. Your author paid a visit to Canny in southern Suzhou on a late September day in 2017 to feel the pulse of the company’s amazing changes, while taking photos of the landmark tower. Canny Vice Presidents Richard Zhu and Ally Wu welcomed me, telling me with pride that a celebration of the company’s 20-year founding and the opening of the newly built test tower was only a few days away.

The total height of the test tower measures 288 m, including its 20-m-deep underground foundation. According to Wang Youlin, Canny president and chairman of the board, this sets the record for the highest elevator test tower in the world. As always, the highest test tower creates an image that allows Canny leaders to draw the attention of the worldwide elevator industry to its recent achievements: 10-mps passenger elevators; 5-mps panoramic elevators and 50-m-rise outdoor escalators, to mention only a few. The tower houses as many as nine elevator hoistways, some of which allow super-high-speed lifts to travel with a maximum speed of 21 mps. To the south of the test tower lies the Technology Building, convenient facilities for several national technical research organizations, as well as R&D and testing departments for Canny.

A test tower serves as the basic platform for product innovation and improvement. It plays multiple key roles in the process of R&D for both elevators and their components, allowing for field testing or simulation of an elevator’s working condition. Researchers and engineers will use the tower to verify a new product’s varied technical features and safety performances before it goes to market. They look for defects and hidden hazards as data for further improvement. Type-test conduct is regarded as a manufacturer’s showcase of its independent R&D capabilities and intellectual properties. The faster the car speed a test tower allows, the stronger a manufacturer’s R&D capability. This tower’s nine hoistways and speed of 21 mps represent the company’s strength, R&D capabilities and precise testing measures.

The grand celebration fell on September 26, 2017, as planned, and Wang Youlin and his top management team showed 500-plus guests to the test tower and Canny’s more than a dozen production lines, including Salvagnini flexible production lines; Wemo sheetmetal processing lines; and robot welding lines. In his opening address to the crowd, Wang Youlin said: “Canny has worked hard for 20 years on self-innovation ever since its founding in 1997, with rapid-flying development, and we shall hold onto our spirit of craftsmanship [and] continue to strengthen the company’s core competitive edges.”

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