Save Energy Sustainably

Reduce energy costs & CO2 emissions now

Would you like to optimise your production processes and save energy and CO2 emissions? Then it's time to switch from pneumatic cylinders to electric actuators.

As early as 2008, IAI defined the efficient use of energy as one of its corporate goals and summarised all measures under the term "Green Automation".

This includes ensuring that IAI actuators are manufactured using as little energy as possible and require significantly less energy than pneumatic cylinders during production. With various energy-saving functions, the power consumption of IAI actuators can be reduced even further.

  1.  Energy consumption:  EleCylinder compared to pneumatic cylinder

The generation and distribution of the compressed air required for the operation of pneumatic cylinders is associated with very high losses that can only be optimised to a limited extent. In addition, the energy requirement of a pneumatic cylinder increases sharply compared to electric cylinders when the utilisation of the production plant and thus the cycle frequency increases. The difference in energy consumption increases with the number of work cycles per minute.

Power consumption at different utilisation rates

In the practical test, the power consumption of an electric cylinder is compared with a pneumatic one at a load of 10, 20 and 30 %. Both actuators operate for one hour each under the same production conditions:

Electric Actuator (EC-S6H)     Pneumatic Cylinder: Ø 25
  • Stroke: 300 mm
  • Payload: 12 kg
  • Speed: 375 mm/s
  • Duration: 0,3 G
  • Duration: 1 h
  • Travel time: 1 s
  • Stroke: 300 mm
  • Payload: 12 kg
  • Speed: 320 mm/s
  • Air pressure: 0,4 MPa
  • Duration: 1 h
  • Travel time: 1 s

  2.  Optional energy saving functions

In addition to the lower energy requirements of electric cylinders compared to compressed air cylinders, their energy consumption can be reduced even further by various energy-saving functions.

These reduce the energy requirement while the electric cylinder is at a standstill. They can be activated or deactivated.

✅ Energy saving stop

By activating the energy saving stop, no power is consumed when the actuator is at a standstill. If the position changes during the stop due to external forces such as vibrations, the electric cylinder automatically returns to the original position.

Comparison: Power consumption of an EleCylinder with and without energy saving stop.

Operating conditions:

  • Cycle: 30 seconds (10% duty cycle)
  • Stroke: 400 mm
  • Speed: 300 mm/s,
  • Payload 10 kg
  • Acceleration 0.3 G
  • Time for one movement 1.5 s


The EleCylinder uses 6.7 Wh with the normal setting, but only 3.7 Wh with the energy saving stop activated, i.e. almost 45% less energy.


✅ Automatic "servo OFF" function

With automatic "servo OFF" function, the motor turns off automatically after a
certain period of time once positioning is completed.

Once the next positioning start signal is commanded, the servo automatically turns ON
and executes positioning operation.

✅ "Full servo" function for actuators with stepper motor (except RCP6 & EleCylinder)

With the "full servo" function, the power consumption can be reduced by servo-controlling the stepper motor.
Normally current is constantly supplied in order to stop the stepper motor completely.

By changing to servo controlling, the current will be controlled based on the load.
Therefore, if there is no external force, such as stop at horizontal mounting, almost no current is consumed.

✅ Automatic "current down" function (only RCP6)

Energy saving by reducing current during positioning stop.

When the motor stops after a positioning stop (without external force), the current consumption is gradually reduced if there is no external force and the position can be maintained.

If an external force is applied and the motor moves, this function gradually increases the stop current until the stop condition can be maintained again.

This reduces the energy requirement at standstill.



  3.  Reduction of CO2 Emissions

The more often pneumatic cylinders are replaced by electric cylinders, the higher the energy savings and the reduction in CO2 emissions.

The example shows the energy consumption and CO2 emissions of an EleCylinder compared to a pneumatic cylinder at a duty of 30%.