Difference Between Light-Duty and Heavy-Duty Linear Actuators

Posted on April 17, 2020 by Anna

Progressive Automations actuators are used in a broad spectrum of industries and applications, including the following:

  • smart houses;
  • furniture for offices and hospitals;
  • farm devices;
  • production;
  • building technology;
  • shipbuilding;
  • robotic technology;
  • commercial equipment;
  • transportation;
  • devices for medical use, caregiving for people with disabilities, etc.

Heavy-Duty Industries  

Tools furnished with heavy-duty actuators are used wherever you want to raise, lower, push or pull and object. Heavy-duty linear actuators are an indispensable component of devices that are popular in specific equipment for different purposes.

Building Technology

The operation of construction, mining, loading and unloading equipment occurs in extreme conditions of dynamic loads and temperature changes. The best construction equipment includes intelligent heavy-duty electric actuators to help the machine work without interruptions and to ensure the safety of its personnel. Thanks to a pair of linear actuators, it's possible to raise a heavy hood or install large-size working attachments.

Farm Machinery

Successful farming could not occur without the use of precision technology that can work under challenging conditions. Note that the efficiency and reliability of agricultural machines are always increased because they must work almost around the clock. Heavy-duty electric linear actuators are guaranteed to eliminate the weaknesses inherent in hydraulic systems and does not require too much maintenance.

For instance, a 2000 lb linear actuator is being successfully used in fertilizer control mechanisms, shredders, and spreaders.

Automation in the Heavy-Duty Industry

New technological solutions are aimed at increasing the productivity of equipment while reducing energy consumption. Trade unions always demand optimization and improvement of working conditions as well as the advancement of workplaces ergonomics. In this regard, the use of high-load intelligent industrial electric linear actuators by Progressive Automations appears to be the solution to such production problems.


Actuators are used in seats and hatches in boat and ship production. They open or close fire doors, alert rescue equipment for use.

Light-Duty Industries

Production of hospital and exercise equipment

The light-duty linear actuator is applied in therapeutic lifts, ergonomic beds, vehicles for the disabled and wheelchairs for transporting patients. Linear drives are also popularly used in medical appliances, special tables and chairs for examining patients and in wellness simulators.

Lawn and garden processing equipment

It is impossible to imagine an electric golf car, attachments for a mini garden tractor, a car lift, and several other special-purpose vehicles without actuators.

Office, household and entertainment equipment

In an office, smart home and in the entertainment sector, light-duty linear actuator 12v is applied in automatic and lifting doors, elevators, gates. They guide satellite dishes, set the position of beds, reclining chairs, adjustable work and computer tables, gaming and vending machines, theater and television, and cinematographic props. In amusement parks, industrial linear actuators run most of the rides.

Industrial Linear Actuators: Pros and Cons

Compared to hydraulic and pneumatic machines, the linear actuator is entirely ready for operation. The space-saving design does not connect to pumps, has no hoses and does not require maintenance. All that is required for the actuator to work is a connection to a 12V DC current source.

Hydraulics, which is popular in conveyor technology and road construction machinery, is capable of developing tremendous pressure but has a significant disadvantage: difficulties with the use of the working fluid. Not only is it toxic, but the liquid can leak, and lose its properties over time.

Pneumatics is not without flaws either:

  • the need to connect a compressor to maintain the working pressure in the cylinder;
  • constant compression and expansion leads to heating and, as a result, condensation;
  • pneumatic actuators don’t show outstanding performance.

Therefore, there are practically no arguments against the use of linear actuators for heavy and light industries.

Unique Features of Linear Actuators

The actuator is a comprehensive device, which distinguishes it from pneumatic and hydraulic actuators that require additional elements, such as linear bearings, rails, and carriages.

Linear actuators consist of a drive and a guide:

  • a ball screw provides the mechanical movement;
  • telescopic tube construction is used to guide movement.

Progressive Actuators

Progressive Automations produces a variety of actuators: Micro, Mini, Mid-Size, Industrial, Tubular, Track with a 0.5 - 6 inch stroke of the piston. Force categories:

  • no more than 50 lbs;
  • 51-250 lbs;
  • 251-1000 lbs;
  • more than 1000 lbs.

The variety of actuators is an effective solution for manufacturing, medicine, households and workplaces, providing all kinds of tools to make people’s lives comfortable and safe.

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