Explore the incredible design behind the modern Z-shaped pantographs

Collecting power has never been easier.
Derya Ozdemir

Even if you don't know what it's called, you've probably seen a pantograph. It's one of those fantastic engineering marvels that grows more fascinating as you learn more about it.

A pantograph is a device that is positioned on the roof of an electric train, tram, or electric bus to gather power from an overhead line. The pantograph is a common type of current collector.

There are also battery-electric buses and trains out there, that can be recharged at charging stations. A single or double wire is typically utilized, with the return current going through the rails. According to Wikipedia, the word derives from the similarity of some designs to mechanical pantographs used for replicating letters and drawings.