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# DC Generator Characteristics

The three most important characteristics or curves of a d.c generator are 1. OpenCircuitCharacteristic (O.C.C.) 2. Internal or Total characteristic (E/Ia) 3. External characteristic (V/IL)

DC GENERATOR CHARACTERISTICS:

The three most important characteristics or curves of a d.c generator are

1. OpenCircuitCharacteristic (O.C.C.)

This curve shows the relation between the generated e.m.f. at no-load (E0) and the field current (If) at constant speed. It is also known as magnetic characteristic or no-load saturation curve. Its shape is practically the same for all generators whether separately or self-excited. The data for O.C.C. curve are obtained experimentally by operating the generator at no load and constant speed and recording the change in terminal voltage as the field current is varied.

2. Internal or Total characteristic (E/Ia)

This curve shows the relation between the generated e.m.f. on load (E) and the armature current (Ia). The e.m.f. E is less than E0 due to the demagnetizing effect of armature reaction. Therefore, this curve will lie below the open circuit characteristic (O.C.C.). The internal characteristic is of interest chiefly to the designer. It cannot be obtained directly by experiment. It is because a voltmeter cannot read the e.m.f. generated on load due to the voltage drop in armature resistance. The internal characteristic can be obtained from external characteristic if winding resistances are known because armature reaction effect is included in both characteristics

3. External characteristic (V/IL)

This curve shows the relation between the terminal voltage (V) and load current (IL). The terminal voltage V will be less than E due to voltage drop in the armature circuit. Therefore, this curve will lie below the internal characteristic. This characteristic is very important in determining the suitability of a generator for a given purpose. It can be obtained by making simultaneous

1 characteristics Series of DC generator:

Fig. shows the connections of a series wound generator. Since there is only one current (that which flows through the whole machine), the load currentis the same as the exciting current. (i)O.C.C.

Curve 1 shows the open circuit characteristic (O.C.C.) of a series generator. It can be obtainedexperimentally by disconnecting the field winding from the machine and exciting it from aseparate d.c. source

(ii) Internal characteristic

Curve 2 shows the total or internal characteristic of a series generator. It gives the relation between the generated e.m.f. E. on load and armature current. Due to armature reaction, the flux in the machine will be less than the flux at no load. Hence, e.m.f. E generated under load conditions will be less than the e.m.f. EO generated under no load conditions. Consequently, internal characteristic curve generated under no load conditions. Consequently, internal characteristic curve lies below the O.C.C. curve; the difference between them representing the effect of armature reaction

(iii)Externalcharacteristic

Curve 3 shows the external characteristic of a series generator. It gives the relation between terminal voltage and load current IL.

V= E-Ia(Ra+Rse)

Therefore, external characteristic curve will lie below internal characteristic curve by an amount equal to ohmic drop[i.e., Ia(Ra+Rse)] in the machine. The internal and external characteristics of a d.c. series generator can be plotted from one another as shown in Fig. Suppose we are given the internal characteristic of the generator. Let the line OC represent the resistance of the whole machine i.e. Ra+Rse.If the load current is OB, drop in the machine is AB i.e.

AB = Ohmic drop in the machine = OB(Ra+Rse)

Now raise a perpendicular from point B and mark a point b on this line such that ab = AB. Then point b will lie on the external characteristic of the generator. Following similar procedure, other points of external characteristic can be located. It is easy to see that we can also plot internal characteristic from the external characteristic.

Characteristics Shunt DC generator:

Fig shows the connections of a shunt wound generator. The armature current Ia splits up into two parts; a small fraction Ish flowing through shunt field winding while the major part IL goes to the external load. (i) O.C.C.

The O.C.C. of a shunt generator is similar in shape to that of a series generator as shown in Fig. The line OA represents the shunt field circuit resistance. When the generator is run at normal speed, it will build up a voltage OM. At no-load, the terminal voltage of the generator will be constant (= OM) represented by the horizontal dotted line MC.

(ii)Internal characteristic

When the generator is loaded, flux per pole is reduced due to armature reaction. Therefore, e.m.f. E generated on load is less than the e.m.f. generated at no load.As a result, the internal characteristic (E/Ia) drops down slightly as shown in Fig.

(iii)External characteristic

Curve 2 shows the external characteristic of a shunt generator. It gives the relation between terminal voltage V and load current IL.

V = E – IaRa = E -(IL +Ish)Ra

Therefore, external characteristic curve will lie below the internal characteristic curve by an amount equal to drop in the armature circuit [i.e., (IL +Ish)Ra ] as shown in Fig

Critical External Resistance for Shunt Generator

If the load resistance across the terminals of a shunt generator is decreased, then load current increase? However, there is a limit to the increase in load current with the decrease of load resistance. Any decrease of load resistance beyond this point, instead of increasing the current, ultimately results in reduced current. Consequently, the external characteristic turns back (dottedcurve) as shown in Fig. The tangent OA to the curve represents the minimum external resistance required to excite the shunt generator on load and is called critical external resistance. If the resistance of the external circuit is less than the critical external resistance (represented by tangent OA in Fig, the machine will refuse to excite or will de-excite if already running This means that external resistance is so low as virtually to short circuit the machine and so doing away with its excitation. There are two critical resistances for a shunt generator viz.,

(i)                critical field resistance

(ii)             critical external resistance. For the shunt generator to build up voltage, the former should not be exceeded and the latter must not be gone below

Characteristics compound generator:

In a compound generator, both series and shunt excitation are combined as shown in Fig. The shunt winding can be connected either across the armature only (short-shunt connection S) or across armature plus series field (long-shunt connection G). The compound generator can be cumulatively compounded or differentially compounded generator. The latter is rarely used in practice. Therefore, we shall discuss the characteristics of cumulatively compounded generator. It may be noted that external characteristics of long and short shunt compound generators are almost identical.

External characteristic

Fig. shows the external characteristics of a cumulatively compounded generator. The series excitation aids the shunt excitation. The degree of compounding depends upon the increase in series excitation with the increase in load current. (i)   If series winding turns are so adjusted that with the increase in load current the terminal voltage increases, it is called over-compounded generator. In such a case, as the load current increases, the series field m.m.f. increases and tends to increase the flux and hence the generated voltage. The increase in generated voltage is greater than the IaRa drop so that instead of decreasing, the terminal voltage increases as shown by curve A in Fig.

(ii)  If series winding turns are so adjusted that with the increase in load current, the terminal voltage substantially remains constant, it is called flat-compounded generator. The series winding of such a machine has lesser number of turns than the one in over-compounded machine and, therefore, does not increase the flux as much for a given load current. Consequently, the full-load voltage is nearly equal to the no-load voltage as indicated by curve B in Fig

(iii) If series field winding has lesser number of turns than for a flat compounded machine, the terminal voltage falls with increase in load current as indicated by curve C m Fig. Such a machine is called under-compounded generator.

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