How to control multiple linear actuators at the same time

How to control multiple linear actuators at the same time

Frank Zhang
Frank Zhang
PA Engineer

A linear actuator is a versatile product that can be found anywhere. It is common to have multiple linear actuators operating in conjunction in a single application. It is great to be able to control multiple linear actuators at the same time, it is also very simple to do so with our linear actuators control system. In this article, we will take you through a few common setups for controlling multiple linear actuators at the same time.

PA-30 dual-channel 30A parallel control wireless control box

Control box for linear Actuator

The most economic control system we have to control two actuators is the PA-30 unit. It has a very compact design, simple plug-and-play function, and fully functional RF wireless remote capabilities. This control box allows for parallel control of linear actuators. This means the user can issue a command to both actuators with one remote control. The linear actuators will mirror each other’s movement based on the command, which is ideal for moving two objects at relatively similar speed and position. 
It’s a great solution if your application does not need full synchronization, but has limited space, and can utilize a wireless control solution.

PA-25 dual-channel 30 A parallel speed control box

Linear actuator for Control Box

The second control box we are looking at is the PA-25 control box, this unit has the same functionality as the PA-30 unit, but with the added function of speed control. The control box comes with a wiring harness, wireless fob remote, and a connector adaptor for the actuators. It is very simple to operate, easy to setup. There are two knobs on the control box to adjust the speed of each of the channels from 0 to 100. 

This control box is usually used in an application where the travel time of the actuator needs to be adjusted, or sometimes only one actuator is needed to extend and retract.

PA-28 two-channel individual control wireless control box

Control Box for Linear actuators

The PA-28 control box is designed to be able to control each of the two channels individually. Using the RF remote provided, users will be able to extend, stop and retract their actuators separately. This is a great way to control two separate systems with only one control box. It saves the space and expense needed to mount a second control box, and still provide the flexibility of issuing a command to the actuators separately with a wireless remote.

To learn more, read our blog on using relays to control high current actuator with low current control box

PA-39 Synchronized dual potentiometer actuator control box

Linear Actuator Control Box

If you are looking for something to truly synchronize your dual actuator setup, the PA-30A control box is just the thing you need. This control box is able to take the potentiometer feedback signal from your potentiometer actuator to calibrate the speed of the two units, so they will be moving in unison, and extend and retract with the same position at all time. This is important when you are trying to use multiple actuators to move one single object. If the actuators are not synchronized, the difference in load or speed could cause the actuator to extend at different positions, and causing winding issues. If left unchecked, it could completely burn out the actuators’ motor. It is important to know that the actuators you are using do have a potentiometer feedback sensor in them. We currently carry quite a few models that have the option. The PA-14P units we have in stock is fully compatible with the PA-39, you can order them online, and receive them the next day.

 

PA-40 Synchronized dual hall effect actuator control box

Linear actuator Control Box

 

The PA-40 control box uses hall effect signals to synchronize the actuators, and it provides even higher accuracies than the PA-39 control boxes. You can use the PA-40 to control hatches, doors, tables, the application opportunities are near limitless. Similar to the PA-39, you will need to make sure the actuator you can using have the hall effect sensors installed in them. We currently provide the PA-04-HS units with a hall effect sensor in stock and many more that can be customized to include the feedback sensor. This control box also comes with wireless remote, so it will be very easy to install and control this unit.

Read our blog to know more about using power supplies and control boxes to synchronize actuators.

PA-22 and PA-24 Wired individual control box

Linear actuator control Boxe

The two-channel and four-channel wire control boxes offer even more options to the users. It is designed to have individual control on each channel. The wired control remote is easy to use, made for the customers who prefer the remote to be tethered the control box. Unlike the control boxes previously mentioned, this one has an AC input and DC output, so you can plug this directly into your wall outlet, and it will be able to power your DC linear actuator directly.

FLTCON-2 FLTCON-3 FLTCON-4 Hall effect control box with presets


Last but not least, is our FLTCON control boxes series. These control boxes use hall effect sensor signals to synchronize the actuators. Like the PA-22 and PA-24, the FLTCON  also has an AC input DC output power supply. With remote like RT-11, the user can save up to four different preset positions into the system. The control box is designed to be used in home automation mostly, like table lift or standing desks, but users have been using them for other applications as well. They come with up to four channels, which means users can synchronize up to four actuators at the same time. They are compatible with our PA-04-HS-24VDC units, which we have in stock.

Read our blog on applications for the FLTCON control Boxes.

There are many ways to control multiple linear actuators at the same time. We at Progressive Automations offer many options in linear actuator control systems that can satisfy a multitude of customer need. Please contact us if you have any questions on how to control your linear actuators.

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