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Automatic voltage regulator (AVR) maintains the Generator terminal voltage at a given
valve automatically by changing the excitation current to the Generator field.

The AVR supplies the required D.C. to the Generator field depending on the load, power
factor etc. to maintain a constant terminal voltage.

The input to the AVR is a 3 phase A.C supply

The A.V.R. consists of a

i) Auto chennel and
ii) A Manual channel

The Auto channel regulates the Generator terminal voltage from 90% to 110% of the
rated voltage. This is a closed loop voltage regulation.

The manual channel regulate the Generator terminal voltage from 0-100% of the rated
voltage. This is called excitation current regulation.

The Generator terminal voltage is fed to the AVR which compares it with a reference
valve and an error signal is generated.

The function of AVR is as follows :

1. The AVR compares the Generator terminal voltage with a preset reference
How this reference voltage is obtained.
2. If the Generator terminal voltage is less than the reference voltage, the AVR
increases D.C. voltage across the Generator field.

If the Generator terminal voltage is more than the reference voltage, then the AVR
reduces the D.C. voltage across the Generator field.

Field forcing :

Suppose the Generator is operating at rated load and rated power factor. Suddenly the
load is thrown off then the voltage suddenly increased.

Then AVR senses the increase in terminal voltage and increases the D.C. voltage across
the Generator field.

This process takes some seconds if the AVR acts in a normal way. During this period the
Generator may be unstable and may pull out of step.
During such operating conditions, it is necessary to reduce the excitation voltage very

This can be achieved by applying a negative voltage to the already available D.C.

In another case if the Generator is running on a light load and suddenly additional load is
applied, then the Generator terminal voltage suddenly falls down.

In such cases, it is necessary to apply voltage in addition to the already existing field

This is called field forcing.

Manual regulation

This is field current control.

Automatic regulation

Generator is brought to rated speed and suppose the rated voltage is excitation is applied
and gradually increase is built up on No load (Ia=0) by increasing the excitation to if that
the Generator is gradually loaded to 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% of Armature current then
the voltage drops as shown in the fig. 2.

Fig. 2 is a graph drawn between terminal voltage V and load current (armature current) I a
on x-axis. This graph is called LOAD CHARACTERISTIC OF Generator.

But it is necessary to maintain terminal voltage constant always. To maintain the terminal
constant, we have to increase the excitation.
At 25% armature current, we have to increase the excitation marginally. At 50% armature
current we have to increase the excitation further. Like that at 75% IA and at 100% IA we
have to increase the excitation. Suppose the machine is operating at 100% IA and rated
voltage, if the armature current reduces to 50% then the terminal voltage increases
beyond rated voltage (over voltage). So we have to reduce the excitation.

That means for every change in load current, we have to change the excitation. It is very
difficult to change manually. Hence automatic voltage regulators are employed to
maintain terminal voltage constant always.

The schematic diagram of AVR is shown in figure.

The Generator terminal voltage is always compared with a reference voltage and the
difference between them (error signal) is used to increase/decrease the excitation. This is
a closed loop voltage control.

The AVR has some additional features other than automatic voltage control.

They are

Change over from manual to auto channel

We have seen here, that the T.G. set is started and excited in manual channel and the
AVR will automatically take over when the Generator voltage exceeds 90% of rated
voltage. When the terminal voltage is 100%, the machine is synchronized and loaded.
The auto channel will maintain the voltage constant for different load conditions.

1) If the Generator terminal voltage is less than 90% or more than 110%, the AVR
changes from auto channel to manual channel.
2) In case of P.T. fuse failure also, the AVR changes from auto channel to manual

The main parts of auto channel are :

i) Auto channel-I
ii) Auto channel-II
iii) Manual channel
iv) Follow up circuit
v) Field forcing
vi) Series compounding
vii) Field flashing
viii) Field breaker
ix) Limiters
The following are technical requirement of AVR.

a) Possibility of applying negative sealing voltage across generator

field winding for fast de-excitation of the Generator.
b) Possibility of applying a positive ceiling voltage across generator
field winding for fast increase in Generator terminal voltage.
c) Transformer drop compensation.
d) Provision stator current and rotor current limiters for optimum
utilization of Generator capability.
e) Drop characteristic for reactive load showing among the
Generators operating in parallel.

Manual regulation

Manual regulation is used during

i) Commissioning
ii) Maintenance
iii) When the auto channel is disturbed

Automatic follow up circuit

Automatic follow up circuit is provided to ensure a smooth change over from auto
regulation to manual regulation in case of problems in auto channel or P.T. fuse failure.

AVR for B.L. Excitation

1. Exciter field – excitation is controlled by AVR to regulate the Generator terminal

2. Required D.C. supply for excitation of exciter field is taken from
3. ϕ output of PMG after rectification.
Exciter field requirement
PMG output

Rectifier – Thyristers
Inter locking between field breaker and generator circuit breaker

High voltage is induced in Field winding when field breaker is opened.

e= L

When the field breaker is opened :

The terminals of Generator field winding will disengage from DC source only after
making contact with a discharge resistor.

The discharge resister will dissipate the energy stored in the Field winding and there by
prevents the induction of high voltages in field winding. The discharge resister shall be
designed such that the voltage induced in field winding should not exceed 1 KV.

Auto channel – with closed loop voltage regulation.

Manual channel – current regulation.

Auto channel

Range of voltage regulation 90 – 110% En

Manual regulation

Range of regulation of generator field current – 20 – 110%

Application of Positive ceiling voltage – 150% of rated voltage.

Negative ceiling voltage

Limiters Setting range

Stator current limiter 100 – 130% of stator current
Rotor current limiter 100 – 130% of rotor current
Rotor angle limiter 60-120°

Series compounding

Series compound transformer and diode bridge is required to provide excitation to

generator field winding to maintain 2.0 per stator current during short circuit of Gen.
Terminals. This is required in the AVRs of static excitation systems. Refer figure-5.4