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What Is a Dual Actuator?

By Alex Newth
Updated May 17, 2024
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A dual actuator is a device with two heads that is made for pushing items with a certain amount of force. While a dual actuator can be made in various actuator styles, linear is the common style used for this type. As with most other actuators, this one has many different uses, from electronics to beds, and it often can be used in places where only a single actuator is needed. Most dual actuators have two heads that function independently of one another, though some have the two work dependently.

Most actuators are differentiated based on how they generate force, but a dual actuator is differentiated by the amount of heads it has. The majority of actuators are single, meaning they just have one head that performs a single function. With dual actuators, there are two heads available. Despite this, dual actuators perform nearly the same type of work as any other actuators — pushing items with force. Some dual actuators are very weak, while others are capable of pushing heavy items with little effort.

There are many different actuator styles, including rotary, level and multi-turn, each describing how the actuator moves or generates force. While a dual actuator can be made from many different styles, the majority are linear actuators. This means the actuator moves in a straight line. The reason for this is that linear technology is fairly simple, making it easy to build an actuator with two heads, and it easily can be given more or less strength to make this actuator applicable for most uses.

This actuator has many uses, but it tends to be used most with devices that need to move in two different directions, or when each section needs to move at different times. This means computer hard drives, adjustable beds and curtains most commonly tend to use dual actuators. While rarely done because of increased costs, dual actuators normally can be used in places where single actuators are needed.

The majority of dual actuators have heads that are able to move independently, which is required for many applications. For example, these actuators are used to control the read and write heads in a computer, and the two have to move independently of one another; the company otherwise may incorrectly use or record memory. At the same time, there are some dual actuator units that feature dependent heads with the two moving at the same time.

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