Escalator Drives


Drives for escalator installations

KEB drives are built for heavy-duty escalators. The drives feature high overloads, an integrated brake transistor, and are capable of 16kHz switching frequency. Even with these capabilities, the drives are compact – perfect for small escalator enclosures. 



KEB drives program in familiar units through a full text LCD display.  Upload/download functionality makes saving and copying parameters easy. The ability to run a variety of different AC motor types – including induction and permanent magnet – makes the drives a versatile choice. They can integrate with any PLC-based controller, like the C6 Smart from KEB.


Advanced error handling and troubleshooting

KEB’s LCD operator features a time-stamped fault log to help diagnose problems. The F5 drive offers many diagnostic parameters and counters that can be used to assist in preventative maintenance of the escalator and system troubleshooting.


Integrated Safety Features

KEB drives offer a host of internal safety features

  • Motor flux and phase check
  • Adjustable torque limits in closed loop operation
  • Software and hardware overcurrent monitors
Energy Savings Mode

KEB escalator drives feature an integrated Sleep Mode function which lowers the escalator speed after a pre-defined period of inactivity. When the escalator registers a lighter load the drive reduces the voltage to the motor, lowering the speed and torque. When a rider crosses a light-curtain, a signal is sent to the drive and speed is slowly returned to normal.


Using KEB’s Energy Savings Mode on your escalator installation can reduce energy consumption up to 80%. It also reduces the magnetizing current to the motor, resulting in an improvement in winding losses in the motor.

SCL motor control™

KEB’s proprietary  SCL motor control algorithms use an accurate motor model to provide closed-loop performance without the use of a traditional encoder devices. In escalator applications this means only the required power is delivered to the motor shaft. 


You can read more about our SCL motor control in this article.

Assembled in the USA

KEB drives are assembled, tested, and supported at the KEB America manufacturing facility located outside of Minneapolis, Minnesota.



save energy regen elevator calculator

Save Energy, Save Money

The R6 regen drives can provide a quick return on investment for a building owner by reducing energy costs.  If you are interested in seeing how much you could potentially save – contact KEB America for more information.

Compact Size

KEB’s R6 line regen unit is extremely compact and can be mounted easily in the escalator control panel.



NCM™ Technology

The R6 unit uses patented NCM control technology to synchronize its output to the utility line.  NCM is extremely robust against lineside disturbances and voltage notching.



Dual Voltage

KEB’sR6 regen drives can be used with either 208-230V or 480V mains.  The units auto-identify the line voltage and make the necessary adjustments.




IEEE 519 Performance

KEB Harmonic Filters provide less than 8% THDI performance.



Passive Design

KEB Z1 filters are easy to implement and maintain.  They are passive devices that do not require extra circuitry or controls to operate.  



Full Size Range

KEB filters are available for large and small escalators.  The Z1 product is offered up to 400A nominal current.


You can learn more in these articles from our blog.

Escalator benefits using a VFD

This is the first of three articles describing the operational benefits and energy savings that can be achieved using VFDs and regen drives in escalator applications.   The second article shows the escalator operational advantages that can be achieved from operating an escalator with a KEB drive. The third article shows the energy savings that can be achieved with an R6 regenerative drive.   If you’re looking for a high-performance drive for your applications – elevators, escalators, cranes, wind turbines or many others – KEB’s F5 drive has the right technology on board. The main benefits from operating a motor with a VFD are...
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Energy Savings with Escalator Drives

This post (2 of 3) describes how using a VFD to control an escalator motor can reduce energy consumption compared to conventional line start control.   The first post in this series described how using a drive to control an escalator can provide operation and performance advantages. The third post shows the energy savings that can be achieved with an R6 line regenerative drive.   The benefits from operating an escalator motor with a VFD generally come in two forms: 1) operational or performance advantages and 2) energy savings. KEB has created these posts to help customers, consultants, and users understand...
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Escalator savings using line regen

  This is the last of 3 posts on escalators.  Post 1 discusses the operational advantages using a VFD with escalators.  Post 2 describes the energy savings that can be achieved with VFDs in escalator applications.   This post focuses on using line regenerative drives with escalators.  Specifically, which escalator applications are prime candidates for regen and will provide the best payback.   During periods where there is an overhauling load (e.g. passengers riding an escalator down), an induction motor acts as a generator and returns energy from the mechanical system to the VFD.   Traditionally, braking resistors were used with VFDs...
Read More


Escalator installations featuring KEB products



Toronto Transit Commission

Image by JasonParis is licensed under CC BY 2.0

La Guardia Airport

Image by Thomas Lillis IV is licensed under CC BY 2.0

JFK Airport

Image by Dwayne Bent is licensed under CC BY 2.0

LA Metro

Image by Chris Yarzab is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Newark Airport

Image by Takahiro Nagao is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Grand Central Station

Image by Jens Fricke is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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