In a recent video with Paul J. Heney, I got the chance to review the features of an H-Track actuator from Warner Linear of Altra Industrial Motion. As we detail, applications abound for medical, off-highway, and industrial applications. In fact, the electric H-Track actuators deliver the smooth motion and strength of hydraulics but from a compact footprint. That’s because of a valve and reservoir design to output force to 4,800 lb.
Sealed versions include those that are weatherproof and dust-tight … even to IP67 and IP69K for temporary submersion or high-pressure washdown. The actuators also include an anodized aluminum housing and standard operating temperature range of -20˚ to 150˚F. Seven models deliver strokes to 16 in.
There are three different hydraulic-fluid options to allow operation in temperatures down to -40° and up to 180° F. Its power pack has a configurable gear pump as well. It’s got the smallest mounting envelope in its class of actuator with a valve and reservoir design to save space.
The H-Track comes in versions to deliver strokes to 16 in. — as well as various end-switch options and configurations. Two gear sizes and multiple gear-housing configurations allow for various pressures and volumes.
Consider one medical application. Linear actuators raise and lower patient tables on magnetic resonance imaging or MRI scanners — to make it easier for patients to get onto the beds. Then actuators raise the table and patient to the height scanner opening. Here, Warner Linear’s H-Track actuator provide reliable movement — with smooth and quiet performance that’s very important in medical applications.
Or consider another use — on agricultural sprayers. These have ever-increasing boom lengths to 130 feet in some cases. These let growers cover their fields more efficiently than ever. The sprayers use actuators to fold and stow their long booms when not in use — but folding and unfolding these massive arms puts high loads on their actuators. Plus moment forces on the actuators (due to bouncing when underway) create tremendous impact that destroys most electric actuators. Here the H-Track actuator excels.
H-Track actuators also work to adjust panel angles on large solar arrays. This movement lets the panels face the sun for maximum efficiency to boost overall solar-farm output to 50% more than those with fixed panels. Plus the H-Track actuators securely hold panels in case of high wind. Essential here are the actuator’s way of hydraulically self-locking during load reversals and holding position without power.
Filed Under: Linear Motion Tips