Just because, I don’t like to draw
The evacuation of high buildings; other elements were given years back/ when the trade towers fell. In extremely high buildings this is to be sectioned into tiers/ the higher elements constructed in an atrium, or specialized section, within the building.
The primary element is a column made either like a spiked post or pipe (spread apart to the outer weight bearing structural needs). It then contains a spiraling auger type track that circles the structural supports: on a slope that is designed to control the speed of the descending parties. They will circle around and around, in a descending fashion; because this is the only way to control speed without major elements involved. The slide connector, which enables a pipe swing (needs a vertical pipe between the legs for control and stability of the human. With a human harness connected to that vertical pipe; along with a sling harness or other means to hang on with your hands. The spiral connector holding the pipe swing; is shaped, in its most simple composition; as an upside down U. And contains a slippery area in the front, and a braking surface in the back where it contacts the actual spiral slide. The pipe swing sits in an angled slot in the connector; which allows the lightest person to be forward in that slot to engage the slippery area, and speed them up. While the heaviest people will automatically move the pipe connection to the back of the slot; thereby applying some brake. These pipe swings, can be combined into 4 or more “roped together” we go together; to enable a more controlled speed for all.
The structural auger is tied to the building at the top; and can contain two or more independent spiral tracks. You can build into the pipe swing a fold down seat; but this is escape, not for fun.
To allow for multiple stories to access the spiral for escape from different floors. Top floors get priority; but wherever a space on the spiral exists. Other floors can add on.
To do this egress “trap doors” are swung into position. That allows access to a “railroad like” access point; where two tracks are then combined into one. A suitable interference element would be installed in that area: to insure access is only granted when there is a gap on the spiral. It is a trip mechanism or other that works in combination with the connectors already coming down the spiral.
It is possible to operate access from below: giving the floors with the most immediate need superiority. But that comes with possible unintended consequences.
All in all, this is the safest and most effective way to evacuate, large numbers of people, from a high building.
A cable system should be applied so that if needed bundled rope swings could be lifted back to where they are needed; it just takes a cable and a pulley at the top; along with the means to reach out and get what you need.
As to the area below at ground level: this can be positioned onto a canopy structure, so as to open the road or whatever; with common stairs, or a common slide coming down the rest of the way.
Because space is expensive in high rise buildings: it is possible to incorporate this design into the floor structures for common usage. IF, you are willing to accept the fire escape must then be swung out, from the enclosure to the outside; before it can be used. It is a delay/ it can be done mechanically; but is then subject to what is happening within the building. If it is a lower floor that problems occur/ the upper floors are then trapped. It can be done with human power or weights; but that assumes someone knows how to do it.
Computer controls over access points and chair lifts; would be far safer as an incorporated wiring system powered from below through the structural elements. That gives the option of safest power distribution to the controls; while allowing for an alternate source of power and manual control or alternate computer to be reconnected at the ground level; to insure all points remain working even if the building has stopped distributing power. LIGHTS that beam into the building from this structure can then be added as the means to illuminate the escape path. They should be a recognizable color, sound, or contain a recognizable element identifying this as the means out.
It may be more tolerable and architecturally pleasing; to use an oblong spiral pathway, as compared to a circular one. The oblong will give the rider a chance to “physically, even out”. You can then also build it off the building. Which can then include an enclosure to incorporate; escape stairs as well.
The entire apparatus does need a run out area at the bottom; which should incorporate a return area for attaching the pipe swing chairs to a lift to return them for further use. What is obvious, is being added in an attempt to limit patent theft. But as always, “change a bolt, add a picture, or any other thing and another patent appears on any subject which can make money”.
Try to keep the greedy from stealing it; no patent is coming; it is free to all
It is optional, to use the old style man lifts: whereby a slow moving belt provides a standing platform and a grip: to be stepped on as its moving. There will be people falling off/ but the majority will escape the fire. This has to move slow/ and it also has to hold the weight of all possible people who might try. it is however small in terms of space and materials; and cheap. the one upgrade to the system is “like an escalator” there must be intertwined pieces that absolutely require a person who fails to get off at the bottom: to get off at the bottom. or the whole thing fails/ as the machinery rips and tears or stops. this does require a slide cage to keep the people in place. This can and should also be used as a means of egress in mid range buildings where people are trapped. as it can be attached as a multi stage, raising platform; transported by truck/ set against the building; and lifted in place to over one hundred feet tall; along a line of windows. this needs to go slower yet; if possible.
There is also the final version: which is simply a cable pulley at floor level: with a harness and cable/ that lowers to the ground. the harness is attached to the person/ and a weight is attached to the cable at ground level; it slows the descent. Correctly made the cable weight will encounter a braking mechanism (there are various styles already made) for slowing the person down during the last part of the descent; before they hit the ground. When the person is disconnected/ the weight brings the harness back up for the next person: a slow process, but better than nothing. this type of contraption can be used on a long boom mounted to a truck and physically extended to over 300 feet. Leaned up against the building at slightly above the evacuating floor; it will be possible to get people out. the truck winch will control descent, and bring the harness back up; it could have additional harness belts at several floor levels which then all come down together. still very slow, but it would save lives. doesn’t exist: because the university brain cannot fathom “save who you can”.
these methods actually allow a fire fighter to be raised where needed; along with their equipment in a much more timely fashion than climbing stairs. you just need an appropriate grappling hook for the cable. and a suitable platform to be attached to the man lift at the floor height needed. doors should be fitted with a quick connect inlet. thereby a fire starving for oxygen can be shoved retardant without opening the door. led string lights can lead the way; for a firefighter or a person trapped.
it would be simple and cheap to install thermometers in fire doors/ or any other device to indicate hot, or very hot. if access to “combustion products” are available without great risk: a blower to suck that in and push it through the door; does make a good fire suppressant; so long as oxygen is limited. if the heat is such that this is useful/ then there is likely, none to be saved on the other side. methods for making a hole in the side of a building/ so as to indicate we are trapped; should also be present. if not by voice/ morse code by light signal should be taught. as simple as possible.
There is a method for evacuating extremely tall buildings: it requires a tube; per floor; and a “plunger, to stand on”. the person stands on the plunger, which is sealed against the tube/ and rides it straight down to the bottom. a valve in the plunger can regulate speed. the pressure rise can slow the person when approaching the bottom. brakes can keep it in place. you do need a revolving escape at the bottom. and enough plungers to keep the process going. an expandable riser pipe to keep other plungers and people from invading your space is also required. but these require room, unless you install each one at the entry location. this is of course usable on basically any building. it requires a simple mechanism (rotate or slide) at the entry point to rotate or place the plunger and person properly on the tube hole. if you must combine floors onto a single tube: computers and sensors are required; which can easily fail in a crisis.
the plunger is best used with a straight pipe put in at the top with a standing seat and harness so the people who faint do not cause trouble. the valve in the plunger to regulate speed: is designed to inflate a collapsible bag on the bottom of the plunder for impact cushioning. the standing pipe should be made to achieve a shock absorber quality for the passenger. that is as simple as putting a shock absorber on the seat.
just so its absolutely clear: you DO need pressure balancing tubes to regulate the pressures between plungers; this is basically a small pipe that opens a hole in one floor, and extends that pipe to another floor where it is put back into the tube to equalize the pressures. this needs a pressure valve to adjust only when needed. you can also mechanically keep the pressures where needed. it is also necessary to rotate or slide the bottom exist point in a way that closes the tube so that pressure can accumulate again for the next person to stop. it just uses a common plate to cover the hole, between compartments; until the exit is evacuated and usable again. this then becomes a design for two exits working together as a slide/ or potentially three exits working in rotation. braking the last few feet should be automatic when the exit compartment is not in place. the primary shock absorber is built into the exit stop. more than one tube can be used per floor/ which can make this a fast exit; IF the exit areas are monitored to insure the people get out. The major drawback for these is: that some will be going through the fire; and must be insulated and sealed against it. as to oxygen it will be in the tube from below. however the seal on the plunger could fail. an accordian style bag on the personal plunger provides not only shock absorbing/ but multiple seals against the tube. if the contact point of these seals is thickened/ and contains a secondary skin; so as not to significantly blow the compressed air (a little cools the other seals) if the seal fails. it should be enough.
firefighters or their equipment can be pushed back up with air pressure/ once the escapees are out. you just need to know, where you want to go. a separate style of plunger is put into the bottom: which can then brake and recognize which floor you want. THE FIRST ride up: is for an explosive charge to open, or tool to cut the tube.
if you prefer; fire fighters can carry the equipment for cutting the tube; but it will drain resources and take much more time. you can also use a cable winch and pulley inserted into the tube if you prefer. the cable winch can be put top or bottom, and run with batteries. a suitable cutting tool would extend below this first “separate plunger”: which attaches itself to the tube. a cutting blade then simply makes a round cut in two places to remove or make it possible to remove a short section of the tube or a puncher tool mounted to hydraulics.
IF you are certain you wish to use the tube to convey firefighters and equipment/ THEN you need to install a tube specifically for that purpose: with doors in the tube wall itself: that can be opened individually from the inside by a fire fighter. in that way you need not disturb or wait for the escapees.