Solenoids are the most common actuator components. The basic principle of operation involves a moving ferrous core (a piston) that will move inside a wire coil as shown below. Normally the piston is held outside of the coil by a spring. When a voltage is applied to the coil and current flows, the coil builds up a magnetic field that attracts the piston and pulls it into the centre of the coil. The piston can be used to supply a linear force. There are many and varied applications of solenoid actuators. All requiring a similar type of movement and force    
    solenoid actuators    

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