Military Rotary Actuators

Military Rotary Actuators are used in defense systems for precise and dynamic control of various mechanisms, facilitating the movement of essential equipment such as weapon systems, radar antennas, and surveillance devices. These actuators convert input signals into rotary motion, enabling swift and accurate adjustments in azimuth and elevation angles, thereby enhancing the agility and effectiveness of military platforms across land, sea, and air domains.
Overview Military Rotary Actuators
By Staff Writer Last updated: April 24th, 2024

Rotary actuators are devices that convert energy into rotary motion, which can be harnessed for movement and control in a variety of different mechanisms.

Used in a range of different military vehicles and equipment to provide rapid, reliable or high-precision movement rotary actuators use one of a number of energy sources. Types of rotary actuators include; pneumatic, hydraulic, piezoelectric, and mechanical.

Electric Rotary Actuators

Electric rotary actuators are one of the most common forms encountered within military, defense and aerospace applications, and provide several advantages over other technologies.

  • The highest precision and most accurate levels of positioning and control, and are typically designed with built-in safety features such as voltage and current overload protection.
  • Lighter and more compact compared to other forms of actuator, and are easily interfaced with electrical and electronic systems.
  • Lower maintenance requirements, as they consist of fewer mechanical components and are not subject to issues such as oil leaks.

Electric rotary actuators use a number of different types of electric motor to provide rotary motion:

DA 30-HT-D Rotary Actuator by Volz

DA 30-HT-D Rotary Actuator by Volz

Servo motors utilize feedback to provide precise control, and deliver fast response times and high levels of torque.

Stepper motors provide the most precise level of positioning, and can be programmed to move a specific number of steps to achieve a particular angular movement.

Brushless DC motors are typically used for applications requiring continuous rotation.

Other forms of rotary actuator such as hydraulic and pneumatic are typically used in applications requiring the highest level of output power and torque, or where a sufficient electrical supply is not available.

Mil-spec Rotary Actuator Applications

Rotary actuators are used in manned and unmanned military aircraft to move flight surfaces, propulsion systems, and payloads.

Armored and ground vehicles rely on actuators to rotate turrets and aim weapons systems precisely.

Naval rotary actuators, which may need to be ruggedized against water ingress and salt spray, are also used for onboard weapons systems, as well as radar and communications systems.