Aluminum Lead Screws for Lightweight and Non-Magnetic Applications

Christopher Nook by Christopher Nook

Aluminum lead screws are an ideal solution in the medical, aerospace and transportation industry in lightweight or non-magnetic applications.


Manufacturing lead screws from different materials is quite common. Aside from alloy and stainless steel, the next most popular material is aluminum. Aluminum is often used when the overall weight of the assembly or machine is critical. Examples of these applications include airline seat actuators, bus and train door opening systems in the transportation industry, and flight surfaces on drones in the aerospace industry. Aluminum screws are manufactured with the same precision as alloy and stainless-steel lead screws and can be coated with Teflon/PTFE or anodized with Teflon. Many of the screws used to open doors on trains and busses are designed with a right, and left-hand thread called a "twin-lead" screw.  The nuts on twin lead screws move in opposite directions with the same rotation, ideal for opening and closing doors.

Aluminum lead screws are an ideal solution in the medical industry, specifically for machines that operate with magnetic fields, like MRI machines. Aluminum screws are used on patient beds in the MRI machine, raising and lowering the surface and moving the patient in and out. In a magnetic environment, aluminum screws are paired with nuts molded or machined from high-performance plastics like peek or blended acetals.

The innovative engineering team at Helix Linear Technologies can help you design new solutions specific to your application, or reverse engineer existing pieces.


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