Farming Equipment

Increased automation in the agriculture industry has increased the efficiency and production capability of farms across the world, leading to the increased adoption of new technologies. International shipments of agricultural robots are set to increase to $87.9 billion by 2025.

But when adopting newer equipment, farmers must be able to replace and repair their tools and find parts such as linear actuators. Let’s dive into linear actuators, one of the most essential elements, and how people use them in agriculture.

How Do Linear Actuators Work?

You may be wondering what are linear actuators? Linear actuators are a piece of machinery that can be added to other equipment for various uses. They convert rotational motion into linear movement.

The resulting motions can include push, pull, injection, and triggers. Linear actuators allow for these motions to be more precise than they would be without the use of linear actuators. This part can increase the preciseness and efficiency of many types of agricultural equipment.

Linear actuators in agriculture have two major purposes. They can provide complete motion control or adjust for precise movements. There are two main types of linear actuators: electric and hydraulic. The most commonly used type in modern equipment is electric linear actuators.

Electrical linear actuators are able to handle forces up to 15,000 N (well over a ton). This allows for a wide variety of agricultural linear actuators uses.

Benefits of Linear Actuators

Linear actuators offer a number of benefits when used for farming and in agricultural equipment. They can help improve a schedule, allow for automation, and dramatically improve precision. All of these improve efficiency when it comes to farming.

Linear actuators can help equipment run on a timed schedule. This allows farmers to get their work done at the appropriate time. In standby mode, power consumption is close to zero, saving energy.

They also help increase the amount of automation. This can greatly improve efficiency and increase production yields. Farmers can also add integration with control systems to monitor and adjust settings on equipment. This further improves efficiency.

Electric linear actuators allow for precise amounts of power in motions compared to their hydraulic counterparts. Electric linear actuators also require less maintenance than hydraulic linear actuators. Equipment owners don’t have to worry about the risk of fluid leaks.

How to Use Linear Actuators for Farming

Most modern pieces of farming equipment make use of linear actuators. 

Linear actuators are used in fertilizer spreaders to regulate how much fertilizer is applied to field crops. They can be paired with a control system to allow more precise control. Farmers can calibrate automatic spreaders based on the field layout and fertilizer needs of the crops.

They are also used in many applications in combines. Linear actuators can also drive the blades in a looping motion. They can also help adjust the position of the cutter bar and the speed of the knives on the bar.

Linear actuators also allow grain tank covers to open and close as needed based on linear motion control. Corn headers have large teeth that cut corn from the stalk. Linear actuators help regulate the distance or space where the cut happens.

There are many uses of linear actuators for tractors. They help control the tractor motion, steering mechanism, and ventilation. 

Seed planting equipment such as seed drills and sowing equipment frequently make use of linear actuators. They are helpful in timing operations to drop seeds at the perfect time.

Linear actuators equipment can be used in automated maintenance on the farm. Agricultural robots are useful in fertilization, irrigation, and pesticide application. Linear actuators allow metered, timed application by releasing the gates on the device at the appropriate time.

Picking machines and sorting machinery frequently use linear actuators to drive their motion. The precision offered by linear actuators helps with this type of precise work. Balers and loaders also include them.

There are some miscellaneous non-equipment uses for linear actuators too. They can be used to open and close barn and stable doors. They help activate ventilation systems in storage sheds and open animal feed gates based on schedules.

How to Choose the Right Linear Actuator

Because of their varied uses, linear actuators are available with a wide variety of specifications. But in order for it to work correctly, you need to pay attention to certain factors. The specific type of linear actuator should match the specific job required.

For one, the type of linear actuator is important. They can be used for smaller projects like opening an attic hatch. But, that wouldn’t work for a tractor. Start by narrowing down your options by application.

Even within larger classes such as industrial actuators, you may have choices for more specific types. Some are rod-type actuators while others may be track linear actuators.

Linear actuators are also rated by the amount of force they can provide. Depending on what equipment you are using it with, there may be a specific range you need to look for. Check the owner’s manual first to see what that may be.

Depending on the application, you may also need to consider the speed and distance the actuator needs to move at. 

Reap the Benefits of Linear Actuators

Linear actuators are used in a variety of agricultural equipment and farming practices. They are used in tractors, combines, and even to open barn doors. Many of these actions become much more efficient when automated rather than done manually.

Utilizing a high-quality linear actuator makes farming much more efficient and productive. Shop Firgelli today for linear actuators that can get the job done.