What is Our Fastest Actuator? Learn About the PA-15 High Speed Linear Actuator

What is Our Fastest Actuator? Learn About the PA-15 High Speed Linear Actuator

Nathan Bong
Nathan Bong
PA Engineer

Everyday, we enjoy seeing the things we needed done being accomplished as fast and efficiently as possible while maintaining quality. Fast action can be a nice luxury to have, however, certain machines and operating systems need fast-acting components to ensure safety and proper operation. The PA-15 has been designed to be our fastest actuator to meet demanding use case requirements for fast travel speeds. This article will cover the important aspects of our PA-15 high speed electric linear actuators such as how they are classified, their important specifications, and example use cases.

Browse through our electric linear actuators, from micro to industrial capabilities

How Are High-Speed Linear Actuators Classified?

Since the speed of an electric linear actuator is relative, there are no set industry standards that outline the minimum specifications to be considered a high speed linear actuator. It is up to the manufacturer to decide if a model should be classified as a high speed linear actuator, however, there are a few factors manufacturers consider during the classification such as:

  • Actuation speed when unloaded and fully loaded
  • Force rating
  • Drive mechanism
  • Actuator type
  • Gearing


Important Specifications


As the fastest unit in our product line, the standard PA-15 actuator has a 1:1 gear ratio driven by our brushed DC motor at 12 VDC. We also offer 24 VDC, 36 VDC, or 48 VDC motor operation, however, these custom orders will have longer manufacturing lead times. With an ingress protection rating of IP54, our high speed electric linear actuator is better suited for indoor applications.

Our PA-15 high speed linear actuator when unloaded has a maximum travel speed of 9.05"/sec for the version with an 11 lbs force rating. In comparison to our second fastest actuator, the PA-04 when unloaded has a maximum travel speed of 2.8"/sec for the version with a 100 lbs force rating. We also offer the PA-15 actuator with higher force ratings; however, the higher weight capacity will result in a slower travel speed.

Force Rating (lbs)

No Load Speed (inch/sec)

Full Load Speed (inch/sec)











To prevent backlash and ensure a lower operating noise rated below 45 dB, our high speed electric linear actuator uses an ACME type screw. Below is an article for reference of the internal components found in our PA-15 repair guide.


Physical Appearance

Since our tubular high speed linear actuators are designed with motors that are mounted in-line, the dimensions of their width and height end up being compact size. This makes them perfect for applications that can work with longer length actuators but had tight space constraints for width and height. Stroke lengths range from 1 inch to 24 inches off the shelf while custom orders can be manufactured up to 30 inches. Our website also has references to the PA-15 datasheet and 3D models for more details.


Mounting Options

Our BRK-15 is the compatible mounting bracket set for PA-15 actuators. These sets of iron steel brackets come as a pair to be mounted on the stroke and motor ends while offering 180° rotation to your application. The BRK-15 also comes with four pins included in the kit for simple installation as demonstrated in our PA-15 Product Overview Video.

Learn why manufacturers and engineers choose to work with Progressive Automations!

Applications Of the PA-15 High Speed Linear Actuator

The applications for a fast-acting actuator such as the PA-15 are limitless. Just to name a few examples, our high-speed electric linear actuators have been used in applications such as:

Automated Fire Grill

Fire pit grills are fantastic during the summer for making great tasting BBQ foods. By integrating a fast acting actuator, our customer John McGurk was able to raise and lower his automated burger grill rack while holding a spatula (or beer!) in one hand. This project makes the task of cooking and managing a grill easier while socializing at the same time.

Due to the aluminum tubes constructed for the grill, John needed an actuator that was compact enough to meet the space restrictions. He selected our PA-15 tubular high speed linear actuator as it was just the right shape to fit. The PA-15 also runs at a high speed of 3.2 inch/second with no load for the 33 lbs force model, allowing for fast grill operation to avoid overcooked foods.

Automated Door Applications

Fast acting automated doors are commonly found in places such as escape rooms, museums, carnivals, and amusement parks. The typical automated door is expected to fully open and close, however, one of our customers had a unique application of simulating Mexican rebels breaking down a door during the invasion of Texas in 1835. Our PA-15 linear actuator was the perfect solution as it had the fast travel speed needed to move a door back and forth. This allowed the application to have noise and visual effects similar to a real door being broken down. Our customer’s project is now in a museum for all visitors to experience.

Home automation is on the rise! Take a look through our range of smart-home products.

Adjustable Safety Railings

Railings are found in nearly every place that has a hazard or risk of falling; however, most railings are fixed in one position. The Dr. Decks Phantom Rail project utilizes our PA-15 high-speed linear actuators to extend and retract the railing next to a pond. Aside from the ability to retract completely out of view, the motion control systems in this setup can also adjust to the suitable heights for ensuring child safety.

In Summary

The PA-15 high-speed linear actuator offers limitless possibilities with its fast travel speeds and compact tubular form factor. Whether it be for promoting better safety, simulating motion, or improving a system’s operating speed, this fast-acting actuator is the perfect solution to handle demanding high speed tasks.

We hope you found this as informative and interesting as we did, especially if you were interested in learning about high-speed linear actuators and their use cases! If you have any queries or wish to discuss our products further, please do not hesitate in reaching out to us! We are experts in what we do and will be happy to assist in any way we can.

sales@progressiveautomations.com | 1-800-676-6123