When a product engineer is tasked to design a machine that requires precise linear positioning, how would one go about accomplishing this? What's the most straightforward and effective method while minimizing component count? Converting electromechanical rotary-to-linear motion can be accomplished in several ways using motors, rack and pinion systems, belt and pulley systems, or other mechanical linkages. The most effective way to accomplish rotary-to-linear motion, however, is within the motor itself. This paper discusses the technology behind stepper motor linear actuators, what makes them different, and concludes with a detailed example illustrating how they should be sized to move a given load.