Sea, Sand, Doppelmayr and the World’s Longest Aerial Ropeway

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Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyên Tân Dung attended the launch of this record-etting project, September 4, 2015.

The Vietnamese islands of Phú Quốc and Hòn Thơm are the sort of exotically pretty holiday getaways that turn even the most mediocre of us into gifted photographers. Now, the photographs that tourists take here are about to become even more dramatic because Doppelmayr has begun building a cable car system of record-breaking length, connecting these two lovely islands.

End to end, the trip will be eight kilometers, making it the longest lift of its type in the world, plus the longest in a single section. We say ‘in a single section’ because, by design, it has to be. Connecting islands, the gondola traverses the beautiful Vietnamese Sea. Towers up to 160 meters tall are also being built on the two islands between Phú Quốc and Hòn Thơm. (That’s over half of the height of the Eiffel Tower, so imagine the views and photo opportunities.)

An extensive holidaymakers’ compound is also being constructed in the area, providing a huge array of exciting pastimes and accommodation for tourists. So the creation of this gondola made business sense.


This new Doppelmayr 3S gondola system will stretch 8km, much of it across open sea.


Guests at the kickoff ceremony included Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyễn Tấn Dũng. Sun Group Corporation the project backers, commissioned Doppelmayr to build the gondola. The team expects to complete the project in about two years.

The gondola is a 3S system, technology which Doppelmayr believes is the best for the job. 3S stands for three ropes (S is for seil, the German word for rope). The system entails two fixed and fully locked track ropes that the cable car travels on, and another circulating ‘haul’ rope which is clamped to the 8-wheel cabin. It can move up to 8.5m/s.

Each cabin provides comfortable space for a capacity of 30 passengers. Doppelmayr created what it calls ‘an innovative carriage wheel generator’ to power the lighting and PA systems inside the cabins. Safety, however, remains the company’s priority. A unique recovery concept is being built into the design of this new gondola system. It ensures passenger safety in case, if for any reason, a cabin gets stranded on the line.


This is just one of several major projects gondola systems Doppelmayr is building in Vietnam.


Recently the two companies teamed up to create several other cable car systems including the Bana Big Ropeway, which itself set two Guinness World Records: 1) the longest gondola system of its kind in one section and 2) the system achieving the greatest vertical height.

Two other significant projects are presently underway: another 3S lift — this one will stretch over six kilometers on Vietnam’s highest mountain, Fansipan — and a reversible aerial tramway in Ha Long Bay. Both projects are coming on apace and the team at Doppelmayr expects they should be completed in the first half of next year.

So clearly the investment group believes Doppelmayr has the chops for this latest record-breaker, crossing the sea.


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