Electric Cylinder

What is an electric cylinder?

The purpose of using electric cylinders is to rotate various kinds of screws, like slide screws or ball screws. Basically, it uses motors to achieve the goal. After that, its motion will be converted into linear motion. The whole process is just like a cylinder that enables reciprocating linear motion. The function is just like a screw driver. For highly precise linear motion procedures, the use of electric cylinders reshapes the landscape of every industry.

However, since the growing interest in electric cylinders, now there are more and more specialized products being manufactured. They are used in a wide range with many different configurations and designs. As customers, it is important to have the background knowledge to tell the minor but crucial differences among all these products. Here is the most comprehensive information for customers to understand more about electric cylinders. For more information, please continue to read.


Classification of Electric Cylinder

According to different types of installation, they can be further divided into three types, including linear, reentry, and vertical cylinder. Linear electric cylinder and reentry electric cylinder are more commonly seen than vertical cylinders. But the advantage of a vertical cylinder is that it can be customized according to customer’s needs. The use of it can effectively reduce the heavy-duty work of your machine.

1. Liner types
This type of electric cylinders is self-locking. They do not consume any energy while not in working mode. Therefore, some think liner types are a useful alternative to pneumatic and hydraulic actuators. Usually, liner electric cylinders are applied with DC motors, signal lines, and potentiometers for position indication. 

2. Reentry type 
When the motor is installed in parallel with the screw axis, it is classified as a reentry type. It provides an alternative to eliminate the burden of heavy-duty work for you.

3. Vertical type 
When the motor axis and screw axis are perpendicular to each other, it can be classified as vertical type.


Electric cylinder application

Nowadays, there are more requirements for factory automation. That is why the use of electric cylinders is dramatically rising. The application of electric cylinders has become more widely. The most common applications are as follows.

1. The entertainment industry requires electric cylinders. For example, instruments in amusement parks need devices that have multi-degrees of movement freedom and multi-degree dynamic freedom. Also, robot arms and joints are extensively equipped with electric cylinders.

2. Since iron and steel industry widely uses electric cylinders in coal, ore, and ash unloading tasks, the use of the device is heavy and crucial as well. Belt conveyors need the function of electric cylinders as well.

3. Since electric cylinders provide high-precision liner motion, many other industrial industries require the help of it, such as mechanical automation production lines, petrochemicals, and material handling work.

4. The car industry surely needs the help of electric cylinders. When manufacturing equipment for a car, the cylinders provide an innovative way to handle the mission. 


Structure of electric cylinders

The structure of electric cylinders is simple but effective. Basically, the whole device includes four parts, which are motor, ball screw, internal magnetic ring, high-strength tapered roller, and synchronous pulley structures.

1. Motor
An electric cylinder can apply various kinds of motors, such as DC motor, stepper motor, or DC brushed motor.

2. Ball screw 
The purpose of the ball screw is to convert spiral motion into linear motion. It’s rotated by a motor. After that, there is the robust piston rod forcing the power to go linear motion. The whole transitioning process is like a screw driver. They are convenient, inexpensive, and easy to buy.

3. Internal magnetic ring
It works with an external sensor of the electric cylinder. It can be operated as a complete position feedback device. Also, the reciprocating motion positions are limited on both sides of the cylinder.

4. High-strength tapered roller bearings 
They are built inside. The main function of it is to provide sufficient push force and pull force when necessary. They are also sealed with a dust-proof ring to prevent any dust from getting inside. If that happens, it may lead to severe consequences like lubrication grease stuck inside. Also, during the linear movement, the sliding sleeve and the guiding device are responsible for protecting the internal components and structure from being damage or abrasion.

5. Synchronous pulley structures
When the motor rotates, the ball screw follows the guide of the motor and is rotated by the transmission of force by these components. It can finish the task with/without a gearbox.

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