4 Most Common Types of Linear Actuators

Living in the world of advanced technology is amazing because of many reasons. Almost every aspect of people’s lives has changed because of different innovations and pieces of technology. The basic ones are familiar to all of us and they are mostly associated with Internet technology. You can now communicate with people around the world from the comfort of your room. Despite that, you can also purchase products online and research any topic that you want. 

However, the daily routine of the people is not the only thing that changed. Different types of tools that improved over the years influence almost every business field. Companies from all the industries started to function differently and they now have the opportunity to be more productive. Logically, when the business operations function more effectively, the profit is going to be better. 

Yet, there is a common problem for all the entrepreneurs that do not allow them to make progress as they imagine. They are not willing to invest additional time to get familiar with the newest technology. Fortunately, you came to the right place to make the first steps. One of the innovations that we want to talk about is linear actuators. Different tasks from different business fields require linear motion. Because of that, knowing everything about linear actuators becomes a necessity. 

Before Everything – What Is Linear Actuator?

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It is completely okay if you have never heard about linear actuators so far. However, if that is the case, you deserve to get an explanation that will improve your knowledge. In short terms, linear actuators are mechanical devices that can produce a straight-line motion. People use motion because of different reasons. For instance, you can use it for different aircraft-control actuating tasks. Besides that, you can also use it for precision-assembly positioning. 

The definition we gave you is the easiest explanation you can get. Yet, the explanation from the above does not say the full story. You should know as well that there are the most common types of linear actuators. All of them can be used for different purposes and tasks. Because of that, it is necessary to analyze each type and see which benefits you can get from them. 

1. Piezoelectric Actuators

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You will soon notice that different types use a different type of energy to complete particular tasks. When we talk about piezoelectric actuators, they use voltage to expand a material. In most cases, people use them to expand ceramic. 

Thanks to their features, they allow an extremely find positioning down to the subnanometer range. Despite that, the entire process comes with short ranges which is crucial for many users. Despite that, we need to highlight that this type offers the quickest acceleration rates. 

In the end, we need to mention the biggest advantage of all. The usage of electric motors allows you to generate only a little magnetic field. In some cases, it might even happen that the measurable magnetic field won’t even exist. Also, some other advantages are low power consumption and they don’t have practical temperature limitations. 

2. Pneumatic Linear Actuators

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Different from the previous type, this one uses gas or air for functioning. We need to be honest and say that their basic design is quite old. Still, in today’s world, they are usually supported by an electric compressor

There are two reasons why people use them. In most cases, you will manage to use them in applications that require 100 PSI or less. Despite that, you can use them when high speeds are necessary. Their speed varies from a couple of inches per second to more than 60 inches of travel per second. You can use them for various industrial applications such as mining, dentistry, door closers, etc. 

3. Hydraulic Linear Actuators

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When we talk about hydraulic type, you should know it uses pressurized hydraulic fluid. More precisely, the typical use of oil. Just like in the previous case, their basic design will see quite old for you. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t get certain advantages out of them. People usually use them for different rugged applications that require high power and high force. Believe it or not, hydraulic actuators can work at the force of 500 PSI and more. 

As we said, people use them because of their high power. Because of that, they are a great choice for precision control systems and heavy-duty machine tools in engineering vehicles. They can also be a great option for marine and aerospace applications. 

The purpose of this article is to help you find out everything important. Because of that, it would be unfair not to mention one disadvantage that everyone should know. Users usually complain about the heat, noise, and certain leakage problems. Additionally, you will need to get some additional equipment to make the best results. For instance, release valves, and fluid reservoirs are something you will need to have. Despite that, you will probably want to get some tools that will reduce noise and heat. 

4. Mechanical/Electro-Mechanical Linear Actuators

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In this case, the purpose of the linear actuator is to convert rotary motion into linear motion. There is one difference between electro-mechanical and mechanical types. In some cases, they are driven by the internal or external power source. To conclude, they can be used by a hand or by a motor. 

In most cases, the mechanism includes different types of screw such as roller screw, ballscrew, etc. Because of that, the screw shaft moves in the straight line when rotating the nut. Despite that, the tool also contains the wheel and axle. In that part, the rotating wheel produces linear motion along a chain, cable, belt, etc. You can probably conclude for which purposes the usage of this type is going to be a perfect choice. 


To conclude, all these types are good for some different purposes. Choosing the right one will not be a complex task. You can easily realize which one will be perfect for you from the features they offer. Yet, finding the place where you can buy good quality ones a bit more difficult. As we said, the purpose of this article is to bring you peace of mind. Because of that, our recommendation is to visit tuli-shop.com. You will manage to see there which types of linear actuators you can find on the market.