Skip to main content
blog | How to Select a Stepper Motor |
|
2 minute read

A stepper motor is part of a total mechanism that produces the necessary torque and speed (required load point) to provide motion to a load – to move it, focus it, lift it, inspect it, etc. There are several performance requirements that must be considered when selecting a stepper motor for an application. In general, the chosen motor solution must produce the necessary load torque, speed, and motion profile requirements, fit in the available space (physical envelope), and perform as required with the available voltage.

The fastest and most reliable way to determine these needs is with a motor sizing tool - Stepper Optimizer. These tools calculate motor load points and then analyze the load and motion profile to generate a list of possible motor matches from the step motor database. By determining the step motor performance curve, temperature profile (an output of the sizing tool), and motor operating voltage, the best step motor option can be found.

Step motors are available in a variety of technologies that can affect selection decisions. Two prevalent step motor styles are the tin-can and the hybrid configurations. Tin-can step motors are typically a lower cost solution, cover the lower end of the holding torque range, and have step angles ranging from 0.9 to 18 degrees. Hybrid step motor designs cover a wide range of holding torque option, are typically used in higher precision applications, and are available with a range of step angles (with 1.8 degrees the most common). Windings are available in both unipolar and bipolar configurations.

Careful consideration of the motor load and available motor voltage requirements are necessary to select the proper stepper motor solution.

Consult an Expert

PMX Series

The PMX family of hybrid stepper motors offers unmatched versatility through a wide range of standard and customizable options, unmatched value through exceptional performance at an affordable cost, and unmatched reliability through Kollmorgen’s superior motion expertise and build quality.

Learn More

Engineer the Exceptional

Learn how to engineer exceptional machines, robots and vehicles with the highest-performing, most reliable motors, drives, automation solutions and more.

Learn More

Related Resources

Kollmorgen Stepper Motor Selection Guide >

Kollmorgen’s stepper motors are designed with versatility, ease–of–use, and cost-effectiveness in mind. They provide high torque in a small package and come in a wide range of standard sizes, constructions, windings and options.
What You Need to Know When Selecting a Drive for Your Stepper Motor

What You Need to Know When Selecting a Drive for Your Stepper Motor >

To get the most out of your stepper motor, you need to pair it with the proper drive. There are three critical elements to keep in mind when making your selection: voltage, current and inductance. Each one plays an important part in a motor’s…

Why Does My Stepper Motor Get Hot? >

All electric motors heat up during operation, which is simply a product of passing current through a coil of wire. Electric motors use copper wire to form coils that are part of the electromagnetic circuit required to produce rotation. While copper…

The Big Debate – Stepper vs Servo >

What is the best motor technology to use in a motion control application? There are numerous technologies to create motion, from hydraulic to pneumatic or electromechanical. In the world of precision motion control, many machine designers face a…

How Does a Stepper Motor Work? >

A stepper motor is a simple two phase brushless synchronous motor containing a segmented magnetized rotor and a stator consisting of a prescribed number of electromagnetic coils. When energized, these coils create north and south polls that push or…

Kollmorgen PMX Series Stepper Motor Selection Guide >

Kollmorgen’s stepper motors are designed with versatility, ease–of–use, and cost-effectiveness in mind. They provide high torque in a small package and come in a wide range of standard sizes, constructions, windings and options.
Kollmorgen Automation and Motion Control - Full line catalog

Kollmorgen Full-line Catalog >

At Kollmorgen, we know that OEM engineers can achieve a lot more when obstacles aren’t in the way. With direct sales, engineering support, manufacturing facilities, and distributors spanning the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, we’re…

Going Small - How Current Step Motor Technology Can Help You Reduce Machine Size >

As it turns out, "going small" is an effort that traces back to the first steppers ever manufactured. Released in 1952, the Sigma "Cyclonome 9" series, one of the first steppers ever designed, was the first standard offering of its kind. Motors had a…