Precision positioning devices and guided actuators for single-axis positioning
A precision actuator is a precise positioning device used to achieve high precision along one single axis of motion. Composed by a moving runner, it is propelled by one of several different technologies/drive options. To position a motorized actuator, a motion controller is used while a manual linear stage is controlled using a linear actuator, micrometer head or adjustment screw.
Each actuator and technology has differentiated features depending on your need of velocity, accuracy or load. We are certain that we can help you find an actuator that will fit your application.
We are happy to assist you with custom requests!
Use the tabs to navigate and get information about available technology drives for Actuators. Click the product images to visit our suppliers website and find more available actuators.
DC & Stepper Motor
- Travel Range – Up to 100 mm
- Resolution – From 100 nm
- Load – Up to 400 N
- Velocity – Up to 50 mm/s
A stepper motor divides a full revolution into a number of full steps with equal distance between them. As each step size is known, the stepper motor can operate in open-loop mode without any position sensor. A DC motor rotates constantly as an operating voltage is applied and the velocity is directly proportional to the input voltage. A Motion Control stage utilizes bearing systems for guidance and encoders for position determination, there are various technologies to accommodate both and we offer a wide selection.
Piezo Linear Actuator
- Travel Range – Up to 1 mm
- Resolution – <1 nm
- Operating Frequency – Up to 20 kHz
- Force – Up to 10 000 N
A piezo linear actuator changes in length when a voltage is applied. Piezo actuators convert electrical energy directly into mechanical energy and vice-versa and allow for motions in the subnanometer range. The precision guidance combined with the lever amplification ensure long travel ranges and excellent accuracy. Determining the position is made with direct measurement with non-contact sensors.
- Travel Range – Up to 35 mm
- Easy integration – can be bolted to even surface
- Compact design – from 20×20 mm
- Encoder resolution – <1 nanometer
There are two main principals regarding piezo motor drives. The first are piezo inertia drives which are compact and inexpensive piezo based drives with high holding forces up to 10 N and medium travel range. The second are ultrasonic piezo motors are particularly suitable for applications that require fast precision positioning. The self-locking drive holds the position of the stage mechanically stable and optical encoders are optional for very high accuracy.
Magnetic Direct Motor/Drive
- Travel Range – Up to 20 mm
- Resolution – From 1 nm
- Force resolution – Up to 1 mN
- Velocity – Up to 750 m/s
Voice coil actuators and magnetic linear drives utilize the fact that the force acting on a current carrying conductor in a magnetic field is proportional to the strength of the magnetic field and the current. This drive offers advantages compared to common spindle-based technologies as it uses few mechanical components. The result is less friction, less wear and less backlash enabling better precision as well as achieving much higher dynamics.
Piezo Walk Drive
- Travel Range – Up to 125 mm
- Resolution – From 1 nm
- Holding Force – Up to 800 N
- Velocity – Up to 15 mm/s
Piezo walk drives use several piezo actuators that are preloaded against a guided rod. These actuators either bend or use shear and clamping forces to move the rod or to fix it in a specific position. The design enables analog motion with very high precision in nanometer scale while the step function enables very long stroke. In theory, there is no limit to the length of the rod. This technology is suitable for demanding applications where long term stability and reliability are needed.