The Sunkid "Sunlift" - the first lift using solar power
The "Sunlift" in the Wilder Kaiser Brixental, made by Sunkid, is powered by energy from photovoltaic cells.
Since December 2008, Westendorf is fully integrated into the Wilder Kaiser Brixental Ski World. A newly constructed 8-passenger gondola now carries passengers from both Westendorf and Brixen im Thale up to Choralpe Mountain. At the top, a shared upper lift station was added to the restaurant in the tightest of spaces.
A 5.5-km long dream descent, which does not end directly next to the new Ski World lift in Brixen, required a creative solution to return guests quickly and safely to the lower station. Sunkid was able to offer the right solution: a combination of a Wonder Carpet with the Radius Side Exit and the SwissCord Lift.
A Sunkid Wonder Carpet brings guests through an underpass up to the 224-metre long Sunlift. With a capacity of 900 passengers per hour, the connection to the lower station is an optimal solution. The special feature of the system is that the Sunkid SwissCord Lift is powered exclusively by energy from photovoltaic cells.
The 113 m² photovoltaic system is installed on the front side of the Ski World lift FBM-garage, producing 12,000 kilowatt-hours each year - although the Sunlift only requires 9,000 kWh during one winter.
Manager Rudi Köck from the Brixen in Thale Lifts: "This photovoltaic system, at a total investment of approx. €70,000 is a small step in the right direction. We can even return the excess electricity back to the grid. Of course, it is only a small part of the consumption of a large lift, but our idea was to take the first step with this facility, and thereby point the way for other ski areas."
SunKid SwissCord specifications