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NSK Develops Ultra-Smooth Motion Technology for NSK Linear Guides

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Jul 10,2023


World's first design with elastic rolling elements significantly reduces friction variation for ultra-smooth motion

Ideal for high-precision inspection and measurement equipment

NSK has developed ultra-smooth motion technology to enhance the performance of NSK Linear Guides used in industrial machinery. The technology achieves a highly consistent dynamic friction profile ideal for high-precision inspection and measurement equipment.

The ultra-smooth motion technology is now available as an option for NH/NS Series linear guides. NSK aims to achieve annual sales of 500 million yen by 2026 of products with this technology.


Linear guides are prized for their low friction and smooth motion. NH/NS Series NSK Linear Guides launched in 2014 and are used today in a wide range of applications such as semiconductor and LCD manufacturing equipment, automotive manufacturing equipment, conveyor robots, and machine tools.

In recent years, manufacturing equipment has become increasingly sophisticated with higher requirements for smooth and accurate motion. In particular, there is demand for even smoother operation of components in inspection and measurement equipment, which requires that linear guides achieve even better operating characteristics.


We developed the ultra-smooth motion technology by optimizing the shape of the ball circulation path and suppressing irregular “micro-stutters” (brief stuttering or jerking in motion due to localized friction fluctuations) with elastic rolling elements.

NSK Linear Guides with ultra-smooth motion technology are ideal for equipment requiring highly consistent smooth motion, such as inspection and measurement equipment. The technology also benefits applications requiring vertical operation and other mounting positions where operating characteristics tend to deteriorate.

In addition, linear guides with ultra-smooth motion technology are dimensionally interchangeable with NH/NS Series linear guides, so units currently in use (e.g. older models) can be replaced without any design changes.

Mechanism of Ultra-Smooth Motion Technology

A significant cause of micro-stutters in linear guides is the balls colliding with each other in the curved sections of the ball circulation path. We optimized the design of the circulation path and included elastic rolling elements in a special configuration to reduce conflict between balls (prevent an increase in friction due to contact between balls) and achieve ultra-smooth motion.


NSK linear guides with ultra-smooth motion technology largely eliminate micro-stutters and have improved operating characteristics contributing to higher accuracy of equipment through smooth motion with no feed speed irregularities.

Supported Models

Ultra-smooth motion option is now available for general purpose NH/NS Series Linear Guides

Sizes: NH 15, 20, 25    NS 15, 20, 25, 30

28 variations including different slider lengths and types

Compatible with a wide variety of options such as NSK K1-L lubrication unit, stainless steel configurations, and surface treatments.

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