Generators or Alternators
Most of the electrical power used aboard
Navy ships and aircraft as well as in civilian
applications is ac.
As a result, the ac generator is the most
important means of producing electrical
power.
Ac generators, generally called alternators,
vary greatly in size depending upon the load
to which they supply power.
Regardless of size, all electrical generators, whether
dc or ac, depend upon the principle of magnetic
induction.
An emf is induced in a coil as a result of
(1) a coil cutting through a magnetic field, or
(2) a magnetic field cutting through a coil.
ROTATINGARMATURE ALTERNATORS
The rotatingarmature alternator is similar in construction
to the dc generator in that the armature rotates in a
stationary magnetic field
the generated ac is brought to the load unchanged by means of
slip rings.
The rotating armature is found only in alternators of low power
rating and generally is not used to supply electric power in large
quantities.
ROTATINGFIELD ALTERNATORS
The rotatingfield alternator has a stationary armature
winding and a rotatingfield winding.
The advantage of having a stationary armature winding
is that the generated voltage can be connected directly to
the load
A rotating armature requires slip rings and brushes to
conduct the current from the armature to the load.
The armature, brushes, and slip rings are difficult to
insulate, and arcovers and short circuits can result at
high voltages.
For this reason, highvoltage alternators are usually of
the rotatingfield type.
Since the voltage applied to the rotating field is low
voltage dc, the problem of high voltage arcover at the
slip rings does not exist.
The stationary armature, or stator, of this type of
alternator holds the windings that are cut by the rotating
magnetic field.
The stator consists of a
laminated iron core with
the armature windings
embedded in this core as
shown in figure. The core
is secured to the stator
frame.
FUNCTIONS OF ALTERNATOR COMPONENTS
A typical rotatingfield ac generator consists of
an alternator and a smaller dc generator built into
a single unit.
The output of the alternator section supplies
alternating voltage to the load.
The only purpose for the dc generator is to
supply the direct current required to maintain the
alternator field.
This dc generator is referred to as the exciter.
PRIME MOVERS
source of mechanical power to turn their rotors.
Two classes:
1. highspeed  Steam and gas turbines
2. lowspeed  while internalcombustion
engines, water, and electric motors
ALTERNATOR ROTORS
Types of rotors used in rotatingfield alternators.
1. Smooth cylindrical (or turbinedriven)
 for high speed
 2 or 4 poles
2. Salient (or projecting)
 for low to medium speed
 With 6 or more poles
Smoothcylindrical
Salient  pole
36pole rotor
4pole rotor
ALTERNATOR CHARACTERISTICS AND LIMITATIONS
Alternators are rated according to the voltage
they are designed to produce and the maximum
current they are capable of providing.
The maximum current that can be supplied by an
alternator depends upon the maximum heating loss
that can be sustained in the armature.
This heating loss (which is an I
2
R power loss)
acts to heat the conductors, and if excessive,
destroys the insulation.
Thus, alternators are rated in terms of this current
and in terms of the voltage output the alternator
rating in small units is in volt amperes; in large
units it is kilovoltamperes
SINGLEPHASE ALTERNATORS
A generator that produces a single, continuously
alternating voltage.
The stator (armature) windings are connected in
series.
They are most often used when the loads being driven
are relatively light.
TWOPHASE ALTERNATORS
A twophase alternator is designed to produce two
completely separate voltages.
Each voltage, by itself, may be considered as a
singlephase voltage.
Note that the windings of the two phases are physically
at right angles (90 ) to each other.
The graph shows the two phases to be 90 apart, with A
leading B.
Has three
singlephase
windings
spaced such
that the
voltage
induced in any
one phase is
displaced by
120 from the
other two.
THREEPHASE ALTERNATOR
ThreePhase Connections
The stator coils of threephase alternators may be
joined together in either wye or delta connections,
as shown in the figure.
With these connections only three wires come out
of the alternator
FREQUENCY
The output frequency of alternator voltage
depends upon the speed of rotation of the rotor and
the number of poles.
poles of number  P rpm, in speed  N where,
120
NP
f =
Note:
A machine that runs at a fixed or constant speed is called
a SYNCHRONOUS MACHINE
Synchronous speed, N
S
, is computed as
Synchronous machine can be operated as a synchronous
generator (alternator) or as a synchronous motor.
P
f
N
S
120
=
INDUCED or GENERATED EMF
Let Z  no. of conductors per phase
T no. of turns per phase
f frequency, in Hz
  flux/pole in Weber
k
d
distribution factor
k
p
pitch or coil span factor
E

 rms value of generated emf per phase
Z f k k T f k k E
d p d p
 

22 . 2 44 . 4 = =
ARMATURE WINDINGS
The single layer winding will have one coil side
per slot, while double layer winding will have
two coil sides/slot.
If one slot per pole or slots equal to number of
poles are employed, then concentrated winding
is obtained. Such windings give maximum
induced emfs.
If the conductors are placed in several slots
under one pole, the winding is known as
distributed winding.
When the two coil sides forming a complete coil of a
winding are 180 electrical space degrees apart, the
winding is known as the full pitch winding.
When the coil span of the winding is less than 180
electrical space degrees i.e. the two coil sides forming a
complete coil are less than 180 electrical space degrees
apart, the winding is known as fractional pitch winding.
In this type of winding, the induced emfs in the two coil
sides is not in phase, so the resultant emf, which is equal
to the vector sum of induced emfs in the coil sides, is less
than their arithmetic sum and so the emf induced in short
pitch coil is less than that in full pitch coil under the same
conditions.
Pitch or chording Factor, k
p
where,
o  angle (in electrical degrees)by which the coil span
falls short of full pitch
2
cos
coil per s emf' induced of sum arithmetic
coil per s emf' induced of sum ector
o
= =
v
k
p
E
Es
Es
Es
2Es
Es
Algebraic sum
Vector sum
Distribution or Breadth Factor, Kd
Where
n no. of slots per pole per phase
2
sin
2
sin
winding ed concentrat with ' coil of sum
winding d distribute with ' coil of sum


n
n
s emf arithmetic
s emf vector
k
d
= =
pole per slots of .
180
no
= 
Algebraic sum
Vector sum
1. Calculate the pitch factor for the undergiven windings:
a) 36 stator slots, 4 poles, coil span 18; b) 72 stator
slots, 6 poles, coil span 110; c)96 stator slots, 6 poles,
coil span 112.
2. Calculate the distribution factor for a 36 slot, 4 pole,
single layer threephase winding.
3. Find the value of k
d
for an alternator with 9 slots per pole
for the following cases: a)one winding in all the slots, b)one
winding using only the first 2/3 of the slots per pole, c)three
equal windings placed sequentially in 60 group.
4. A three phase, 16pole alternator has a starconnected
winding with 144 slots, 10 conductors per slot. The
sinusoidally distributed flux per pole is 0.03Wb and the
speed is 375rpm. Find the frequency; and the phase and line
emf. Assume fullpitched coil.
5. Find the noload phase and line voltage of a star
connected 3, 6pole alternator which runs at
1200rpm, having flux per pole of 0.1Wb. Its stator
has 54 slots having double layer winding. Each coil
has 8 turns and the coil is chorded by 1 slot.
6. The stator of a 3 phase, 16pole alternator has 144
slots and there are 4 conductors per slot. If the
speed of the alternator is 375 rpm, calculate the
induced emf per phase. Resultant flux in the air gap
is 0.05Wb/pole. Assume the coil span is 150.
Alternator on Load
Fig. (1) shows Yconnected alternator supplying inductive load
(laggingp.f.).
When the load on the alternator is increased (i.e., armature
current Ia is increased), the field excitation and speed being kept
constant, the terminal voltage V (phase value) of the alternator
decreases.
Fig. (1)
This is due to
(1) Voltage drop IaRa where Ra is
the armature resistance per phase.
(2) Voltage drop IaXL
where XL is the armature leakage
reactance per phase.
(3) Voltage drop because
of armature reaction.
(1) Armature Resistance (Ra)
Since the armature or stator winding has some resistance, there
will be an IaRa drop when current (Ia) flows through it.
The armature resistance per phase is generally small so that IaRa
drop is negligible for all practical purposes.
(2) Armature Leakage Reactance (X
L
)
When current flows through the armature
winding, flux is set up and a part of it does
not cross the airgap and links the coil sides
as shown in Fig. (2). This leakage flux
alternates with current and gives the
winding selfinductance. This is called
armature leakage reactance. Therefore,
there will be IaX
L
drop which is also
effective in reducing the terminal voltage.
Fig.(2)
(3) Armature reaction
As in dc generators, armature reaction is the effect of armature
flux on the main field flux.
Its effect is of the nature of an inductive reactance.
Therefore, armature reaction effect is accounted for by
assuming the presence of a fictitious reactance X
AR
in the
armature winding.
The quantity X
AR
is called reactance of armature reaction.
The value of X
AR
is such that Ia X
AR
represents the voltage drop
due to armature reaction.
For the same field excitation, terminal voltage
decreases from its noload value E
to V (for
lagging pf) due to:
1. Drop due to armature resistance, IR
a
2. Drop due to leakage reactance, IX
L
3. Drop due to armature reaction, IX
ar
V
E
E
I
NOTATIONS
Ra effective value of the armature resistance per phase
X
L
leakage reactance per phase
X
AR
reactance due to armature reaction per phase
X
s
synchronous reactance per phase
X
s
=X
L
+X
AR
Z
s
synchronous impedance per phase
I=Ia RMS armature current per phase
V terminal voltage per phase
E
and I
a
X
AR
E
EQUIVALENT CIRCUIT
) (
) (
AR a
L a a
jX I E E
jX R I V E
+ =
+ + =

E
) (
S a a S a
jX R I V Z I V E + + = + =

AR L S
X X X + =
Z
s
= R
a
+ j X
s
Phasor Diagram of a Loaded Alternator
Fig. (4) shows the phasor diagram of an alternator for the
usual case of inductive load.
Fig.(4)
The armature current Ia lags the
terminal voltage V by p.f. angle
The phasor sum of V and drops
IaRa and IaX
L
gives the load
induced voltage E. It is the
induced e.m.f. after allowing for
armature reaction.
The phasor sum of E and IaX
AR
gives the noload e.m.f. E
0
Note that in drawing the phasor diagram either the
terminal voltage (V) or armature current (Ia) may be
taken as the reference phasor.
A phasor diagram of a synchronous generator with
a unity power factor (resistive load)
Leading power factor (capacitive load).
Voltage Regulation
The voltage regulation of an alternator is defined as the
change in terminal voltage from noload to fullload (the
speed and field excitation being constant)divided by fullload
voltage.
100 100
% x
V
V E
x
voltage load Full
voltage load Full voltage load No
VR
O
=
=
Note that (E
0
V) is the arithmetic difference and not the
phasor difference.
For leading load p.f., the noload voltage is less than the
fullload voltage.
Hence voltage regulation is negative in this case.
The effects of different load power factors on the change
in the terminal voltage with changes of load on the
alternator are shown in Fig. (5).
Since the regulation of an alternator depends on the
load and the load power factor, it is necessary to mention
power factor while expressing regulation.
Fig. (5)
Determination of the parameters of the equivalent
circuit from test data
The equivalent circuit of a synchronous generator that has been
derived contains three quantities that must be determined in order
to completely describe the behaviour of a synchronous generator:
The saturation characteristic: relationship between I
f
and  (and
therefore between I
f
and E
o
)
The synchronous reactance, X
s
The armature resistance, R
a
The above three quantities could be determined by performing the
following three tests:
Opencircuit test
Shortcircuit test
DC test
Opencircuit test
The generator is run at the rated speed
The terminals are disconnected from all loads, and the field current
is set to zero.
Then the field current is gradually increased in steps, and the
terminal voltage is measured at each step along the way.
It is thus possible to obtain an opencircuit characteristic of a
generator (E
OC
or V
t
versus I
f
) from this information
+
V
dc
I
f
V
t
Shortcircuit test
Adjust the field current to zero and shortcircuit the terminals of
the generator through a set of ammeters.
Record the armature current I
sc
as the field current is increased.
Such a plot is called shortcircuit characteristic.
A
A
+
V
DC
I
f
I
sc
If the stator is Yconnected, the per phase stator DC resistance is
If the stator is deltaconnected, the per phase stator DC
resistance is
DC Test
This test is conducted to measurewinding resistance of a
synchronous generator when it is at rest and the field winding is
open. The resistance is measured between two lines at a time
and the average of the three resistance readings is taken to be
the measured value of the resistance, RL, from line to line.
2
L
dc
R
R =
L dc
R R
2
3
=
Due to skin effect, use: R
a
= 1.5R
dc
Determination of X
s
The internal machine impedance is
Y = A =
=
if
3
; if
3
) (
) (
) (
) (
) (
) (
L SC
L OC
S
L SC
L OC
S
SC
OC
S
I
E
Z
I
E
Z
I
E
Z


Then the synchronous reactance X
s
could be obtained using
2 2
a s s
R Z X =
Where, R
a
is known from the DC test.
Example : A 200 kVA, 480 V, 50 Hz, Yconnected synchronous generator
with a rated field current of 5 A was tested and the following data were
obtained:
1. V
T,OC
= 540 V at the rated I
F
.
2. I
L,SC
= 300 A at the rated I
F
.
3. When a DC voltage of 10 V was applied to two of the terminals, a
current of 25 A was measured.
Find the generators model at the rated conditions (i.e., the armature
resistance and the synchronous reactance).
Since the generator is Yconnected, a
DC voltage was applied between its two
phases. Therefore:
O =

.

\

= =
O = = =
3 . 0 4 . 0
2
1
5 . 1 5 . 1
4 . 0
25
10
dc a
DC
DC
L
R R
I
V
R
The internal generated voltage at the rated field current is
,
540
311.8
3 3
T
A OC
V
E V V

= = = =
The synchronous reactance at the rated field current is
The equivalent circuit
O = = = 995 . 0 3 . 0
300
8 . 311
2
2
2
2 2
a s s
R Z X
Example :: A 480 V, 60 Hz, Yconnected sixpole synchronous generator has
a perphase synchronous reactance of 1.0 O. Its fullload armature current
is 60 A at 0.8 PF lagging. Its friction and windage losses are 1.5 kW and
core losses are 1.0 kW at 60 Hz at full load. Assume that the armature
resistance (and, therefore, the I
2
R losses) can be ignored. The field current
has been adjusted such that the noload terminal voltage is 480 V.
a. What is the speed of rotation of this generator?
b. What is the terminal voltage of the generator if
1. It is loaded with the rated current at 0.8 PF lagging;
2. It is loaded with the rated current at 1.0 PF;
3. It is loaded with the rated current at 0.8 PF leading.
c. What is the efficiency of this generator (ignoring the unknown electrical
losses) when it is operating at the rated current and 0.8 PF lagging?
d. How much shaft torque must be applied by the prime mover at the full
load?
e. What is the voltage regulation of this generator at 0.8 PF lagging? at 1.0
PF? at 0.8 PF leading?
Since the generator is Yconnected, its phase voltage is
3 277
T
V V V

= =
At no load, the armature current I
A
= 0 and the internal generated voltage
is E
A
= 277 V and it is constant since the field current was initially adjusted
that way.
a. The speed of rotation of a synchronous generator is
120 120
60 1200
6
m e
n f rpm
P
= = =
which is
1200
2 125.7
60
m
rad s e t = =
b.1. For the generator at the rated current and the 0.8 pf
lagging, the phasor diagram is shown.
The phase voltage is at 0
0
, the magnitude of E
is 277 V,
1 60 36.87 60 53.13
S A
jX I j = Z = Z
Two unknown quantities are the
magnitude of V

and the angle o of
E
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