Cylinder drive systems have gained rapid popularity in industrial automation since the 1970s. Today, the cylinder has become the mainstream actuator for PTP (PointToPoint) handling in industrial production at home and abroad. The market for pneumatic components based on the cylinder drive system has reached a scale of 11 billion US dollars.
Since the 1990s, the rapid development of motors and their microelectronics control technology has made it possible to use electric actuators in industrial automation. Moreover, the rise of the semiconductor industry has directly promoted the expansion of the application of electric actuators capable of achieving high-precision multi-point positioning in the industrial field.
In the late 1990s, major industrialized countries such as Japan even had the argument that electric actuators would soon replace cylinders and cylinders would withdraw from the historical stage. Because it is widely believed that the energy conversion efficiency of the motor in the electric actuator is high, and the cylinder energy conversion efficiency is low, the inefficient product will be eliminated. However, ten years later, electric actuators have not been popularized in the industrial field, and the market size is still far from the aerodynamics. Moreover, whether in industrialized countries or in emerging industrial countries such as China, the sales of cylinders have not only decreased, but are still growing steadily. In China, the annual growth rate of cylinder sales has been maintained at over 20% in recent years.
If you need to evaluate both scientifically and objectively, you must use the LifeCycleAssessment method to consider the comprehensive indicators of the three stages of manufacturing, use and waste. Specific indicators include cost, energy consumption, and environmental burden (mainly emissions, etc.). For example, cost, electric actuators have advantages in operating energy (use phase) costs, but maintenance costs (use phase) and acquisition costs (manufacturing phase) are much higher than cylinders, and the comparison on this indicator should be based on The sum of all costs.
In terms of total cost, our results show that cylinders have certain advantages in most industrial applications.
Based on the above analysis, we should see that cylinders and electric actuators have their own characteristics. It is not possible to evaluate their advantages and disadvantages simply by using the level of efficiency. With the development of electrical technology, the cost of electric actuators will further decline. It is expected that the application field will be further expanded, but it is unrealistic to completely replace the cylinders with self-priming non-blocking sewage pumps.
From the market form, it has been mentioned that if the electric cylinder is produced from the beginning with reference to the shape of the cylinder and the installation and connection dimensions, it is a good start. For the rodless cylinders and pneumatic slides that do not currently have ISO standards, the corresponding shape and installation connection size are also adopted. This convenient measure can prevent unnecessary competition between gas drive and electric drive in installation, addition or replacement. . FESTO's electric drive products include more than 300 freely combustable gripping modules and multi-axis systems. At Festo, electric drives are not a competitive product for pneumatic drives, but a perfect complement to the performance of pneumatic drives. The electric drive is characterized by precision and flexibility. In applications where force quickly disappears and precise positioning is required, the electric drive is the ideal solution for non-blocking self-priming sewage pumps.