Incremental Steps

A staircase that raises from a flat surface to a full height using only the weight of the person ascending it.

How it works

We can use the weight of the person stepping down to lift the first level of steps. This process repeats with every step until reaching full height.

First Step

Level 1

Full Height

The first step is the trigger to raise the first row of the flat steps. The first row can also be hidden in the ground to appear completely flat.

When the cycle is complete the stairs are locked to simulate normal stairs. However, the mechanism can be released again to bring the stairs down to the bottom.

Internal Bevel Gears

A network of complex bevel gears, pinions, and gear racks are used to convert the push down from the person to a rotational movement and then transfer it to the other steps as a push upwards. Small clippings hold the raised steps once they are in place.


With this mechanism, the incremental stairs rise with only the weight of the person completely independent from any outside electricity or motors.

Clean Energy Transfer

The Incremental Steps

Show how the environment can morph responsively to our desires without the need to connect with a larger energy grid and deplete more energy resources.

The Flex

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