Types of Can Stack Stepper Motors: Which One is Right for You?


Types of Can Stack Stepper Motors: Which One is Right for You?


Can stack stepper motors are widely used in various industries for precise motion control applications. These versatile motors offer high torque, accurate positioning, and excellent holding torque, making them suitable for a wide range of applications. However, with different types of can stack stepper motors available in the market, it can be challenging to choose the right one for your specific requirements. In this article, we will explore the various types of can stack stepper motors and help you determine which one is the best fit for your application.

Variable Reluctance Stepper Motors

Variable reluctance (VR) can stack stepper motors are known for their simplicity and cost-effectiveness. They consist of a rotor with multiple teeth and a stator with corresponding toothed poles. When a current is applied to the stator coil, the rotor aligns itself with the magnetic field, providing a step in motion. VR stepper motors offer low torque compared to other types, but they excel in high-speed applications. They are commonly used in printers, scanners, and other devices that require rapid movement.

Permanent Magnet Stepper Motors

Permanent magnet (PM) can stack stepper motors are the most commonly used type in motion control systems. These motors have a permanent magnet rotor and a stator with multiple windings. When current is applied to the windings, the interaction between the magnetic fields of the rotor and stator produces rotational motion. PM stepper motors offer higher torque compared to VR motors and are ideal for applications that require high precision and accuracy. They are widely used in CNC machines, robotics, and medical equipment.

Hybrid Stepper Motors

Hybrid can stack stepper motors combine the benefits of both VR and PM motors, making them extremely versatile and widely used in various applications. These motors have a toothed rotor and multiple windings on the stator, like VR motors. However, they also have a permanent magnet component in the rotor, similar to PM motors. Hybrid stepper motors offer high torque, excellent positional accuracy, and good holding torque. They are often chosen for applications that require a combination of high performance and cost-effectiveness, such as industrial automation, 3D printers, and laboratory equipment.

Unipolar Stepper Motors

Unipolar can stack stepper motors are a type of PM stepper motors that offer an easy-to-use design and simplified control. These motors have multiple windings on the stator, and the current flows in only one direction through each winding. By switching the current between different windings, the magnetic fields interact to produce motion. Unipolar stepper motors provide moderate torque and are commonly used in applications that require precise motion control at low to medium speeds, such as camera lenses, robotics, and small positioning systems.

Bipolar Stepper Motors

Bipolar can stack stepper motors are another type of PM stepper motors known for their high torque and excellent performance. These motors have two windings per phase, and the current flows in both directions through each winding. By controlling the current polarity and sequence, the motor can achieve precise step motions with high torque. Bipolar stepper motors are commonly used in applications that require high-speed or high-torque movements, such as industrial machinery, robotic arms, and large-scale positioning systems.


When selecting a can stack stepper motor for your application, it is crucial to consider various factors such as torque requirements, speed, precision, and cost. Variable reluctance motors are suitable for high-speed applications, while permanent magnet motors offer higher torque and accuracy. Hybrid motors provide a balanced performance, and unipolar motors offer simplified control. Bipolar motors excel in high-speed and high-torque applications. By understanding the different types of can stack stepper motors and their unique characteristics, you can make an informed decision and choose the right motor for your specific needs. Remember to consult with a knowledgeable supplier or engineer to ensure the best match between your application requirements and the motor's capabilities.


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