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As we know “Energy neither can be created nor it can be destroyed, it can only be
transferred from one form to another”. In DC machine, mechanical energy is converted
into the electrical energy. During this process, the total input power is not transformed
into output power. Some part of input power gets wasted in various forms. The form of
this loss may vary from one machine to another. These losses give in rise in temperature
of machine and reduce the efficiency of the machine. In DC Machine, there are broadly
four main categories of energy loss.

Fig. 3.1
3.1 Iron Loss in Armature (Pi)
Due to the rotation of the iron core of the armature in the magnetic flux of the field
poles, there are some losses taking place continuously in the core and are known as iron
losses or core losses. Iron losses consist of

a. Hysteresis Loss (Ph)

This loss is due to the reversal of magnetisation of the armature core. Every
portion of the rotating core passes under N and Spole alternately, thereby
attaining S and N polarity respectively. The core undergoes one complete cycle
of magnetic reversal after passing under one pair of poles. If P is the number of
poles and N, the armature speed in rpm, then the frequency of magnetic
reversals is f = PN/120

The loss depends upon the volume and grade of iron, maximum value of
flux density Bmax and frequency of magnetic reversals. For normal flux
densities (i.e. upto 1,5 Wb/m2) , hysteresis loss is given by Steinmetz formula.
According to this formula,
Ph = khB1.6max f V in Watt
V = volume of the core in m3
kh = steinmetz hysteresis coefficient

Value of kh for:
Good dynamo sheet steel = 502 J/m3
Silicon steel = 191 J/m3
Hard cast steel = 7040 J/m3
Cast steel = 750 - 3000 J/m3
Cast Iron = 2700 - 4000J/m3

b. Eddy Current Loss (Pe)

When the armature core rotates, it also cuts the magnetic flux. Hence, an emf is
induced in the body of the core according to the laws of electromagnetic induction.
This emf though small, sets up large current in the body of he core due to its small
resistance. This current is known as eddy current . The power loss due to the flow of
this current is known as eddy current loss. This loss would be considerable is solid
iron core is used.
It is found that eddy current loss Pe is given by the relation:

Pe =ke B2maxf2 t2 V2 in Watts

Bmax = maximum flux density
t = thickness of each lamination
f = frequency of magnetic reversals
V = volume of the armature core

3.2 Copper Losses or Electrical Losses in DC Machine or Winding Loss (Pcu)

The copper losses are the winding losses taking place during the current flowing
through the winding. These losses occur due to the resistance in the winding. In DC
machine, there are only two winding, armature and field winding.
Thus copper losses categories in three parts; armature loss, field winding loss, and
brush contact resistance loss. The copper losses are proportional to square of the current
flowing through the winding.

a. Armature Copper Loss in DC Machine

Armature copper loss = Ia2Ra
Ia is armature current
Ra is armature resistance.

These losses are about 30% of the total full load losses.
c. Field Winding Copper Loss in DC Machine

Field winding copper loss = If2Rf

If is field current
Rf is field resistance.

These losses are about 25% theoretically, but practically it is constant.

d. Brush Contact Resistance Loss in DC Machine

Brush contact loss attributes to resistance between the surface of brush and
commutator. It is not a loss which could be calculated separately as it is a part of variable
losses. Generally, it contributes in both the types of copper losses. So, they are factor in
the calculation of above losses.

3.3 Mechanical Losses in DC Machine

The losses associated with mechanical friction of the machine are called mechanical
losses. These losses occur due to friction in the moving parts of the machine like bearing,
brushes etc, and windage losses occurs due to the air inside the rotating coil of the
machine. These losses are usually very small about 15% of full load loss.

3.4 Stray Load Losses in DC Machine

There are some more losses other than the losses which have been discussed above.
These losses are called stray-load losses. These miscellaneous losses are due to the
short-circuit current in the coil undergoing commutation, distortion of flux due to
armature and many more losses which are difficult to find. These losses are difficult to
determine. However, they are taken as 1% of the whole load power output.

Armature copper loss ( Ia2Ra ) is known as variable loss because it varies with the
load current.

Total Losses = Iron Losses + Copper Losses + Mechanical Losses+ Stray Losses

Total Losses = Variable Losses + Constant Losses

Total Losses = Variable Losses + Constant Losses

Power Stages
Various power stages in the case of a dc generator are shown in Fig. 3.2:

Fig. 3.2

Efficiency is simply defined as the ratio of output power to the input power.
Sample Problem 3.1
A shunt generator delivers 195 A at terminal p.d. of 250 V. the armature resistance
and shunt field resistance are 0.02 Ω and 50 Ω respectively. The iron and friction losses
equal 950W. Find:
a. E.M.F. generated
b. Cu losses
c. Output of the prime mover
d. Commercial, mechanical and electrical efficiency

Sample Problem 3.2

A shunt generator has a F.L. current of 196 A at 220V. the stray losses are 720W and
the shunt field coil resistance is 55 Ω. If it has a F.L. efficiency of 88%, find the armature
Sample Problem 3.3
A 4-pole d.c. generator is delivering 20A to a load of 10 Ω. If the armature resistance
is 0.5 Ω and the shunt field resistance is 50 Ω, calculate the induced e.m.f. and the
efficiency of the machine. Allow a drop of 1 V per brush.

Sample Problem 3.4

In a d.c. machine the total iron loss is 8 kW at its speed and excitation. If excitation
remains the same, but the speed is reduced by 25%, the total iron loss is found to be 5
kW. Calculate the hysteresis and eddy current loss at;
a. Full speed
b. Half of the rated speed
Sample problem 3.5
The hysteresis and eddy current losses in a d.c. machine running at 1000 rpm are
250 W and 100 W respectively. If the flux remains constant, at what speed will the total
iron losses be halved?

Sample Problem 3.6

A long shunt compound generator gives a 240V at field output of 100A. The
resistance of armature including brushes is 0.2 Ω, series field is 0.03 Ω, interpole
resistance is 0.025 Ω, shunt field is 60 Ω. the iron loss at FL is 1000 W, friction and
windage loss is 500W. Calculate the FL efficiency.
Sample Problem 3.7
A shunt generator supplies 100 A at 200V. The armature and shunt resistance are
0.025Ω and 100Ω, respectively. If the copper losses is equal to iron losses at this load,
find the brake horse power of the engine driving the generator.

Sample Problem 3.8

A shunt generator delivers 195 A at terminal voltage of 250 V. the armature
resistance, shunt field resistance of 0.02 Ω, 50 Ω, respectively. The iron and friction
losses equal to 950 W. What is the overall efficiency at:
a. Full load
b. Three quarter load
Sample Problem 3.9
The winding of short shunt compound generator have the following resistances:
armature, shunt field, interpole and series field are 0.5Ω, 253 Ω, 0.2 Ω and 0.15Ω,
respectively. When the generator delivers FL of 20kW at 500V, its total drop is 2 V. the
sum of iron and friction losses is 800 W. What is the full load efficiency?

Sample Problem 3.10

A20 kW, 200V shunt generator is operated at rated load. If the driving engine is
developing 30 Hp, determine iron and friction losses. Armature resistance is 0.05Ω and
shunt field resistance is 50 Ω.
Condition for Maximum Efficiency
The DC generator efficiency is perpetual but varies with load.
Think through a shunt generator supplying a load current IL at a terminal voltage V.

Po = VIL
Pin = Po + Ptotal losses
= VIL + Variable losses+Constant losses
= VIL + I2a Ra + I2fRf + SPL

The shunt field current If is generally small as compared to IL and, therefore, can be
neglected. ( ∵ IL ≈ Ia )
Generator input = VTIa + I2a Ra + I2fRf + SPL

Now Efficiency η = output / Input

= VTIa / (VTIa + I2a Ra + I2fRf + SPL)

= 1 / {1+[(IaRa/VT)+(I2fRf + SPL/VTIa)]}

The efficiency is always maximum when the denominator is minimum i.e.,

d/dIa {( IaRa/VT) + (SPL + I2fRf +VTI2a)} = 0

(Ra/VT) – (2fRf + SPL/ VTI2a) = 0

Ra/VT = I2fRf + SPL /VTI2a

I2aRa = I2fRf + SPL

i.e. Variable loss = Constant loss

The armature current corresponding to maximum efficiency Iamax is given by;

Iamax = √ (I2fRf + SPL)/Ra

Therefore, the efficiency of a DC generator will always be maximum once the load
current is such that variable loss is the same to the constant loss.

Thus the efficiency increases with increase in load current, reaches a maximum
value when load current equals the value given by the above equation and then starts
Efficiency curve
The efficiency of a machine is different at different values of power output. As the
output increases, the efficiency increases till it reaches a maximum value. As the output
is further increased, the efficiency starts decreasing. A graph of efficiency vs. output is
called efficiency curve. The machines are so designed as to give maximum efficiency at
or near the rated output of the machine. Since the generators operate at a constant
terminal voltage VT, the efficiency curve of a generator can be drawn between efficiency
and load current I.
Fig. 3.3 shows the deviation of efficiency with load current.

Fig. 3.3
Sample Problem 3.11
The following information is given in connection with a 10 kW, 220 V long shunt
compound generator: Rf = 120Ω, Ra= 0.4 Ω, Rse = 0.03 Ω, SPL = 400 W, VBC= 3V.
a. Calculate the efficiency at:
i. Full load
ii. Half load
b. Calculate the power output of the generator at maximum efficiency.
c. Maximum efficiency
Sample Problem 3.12
The long shunt compound generator delivers 65 kW, 250V, 1500 rpm, Ra = 0.03Ω,
Rse = 0.07 Ω, Rf = 50 Ω, SPL = 1020W, VBC at full load is 2 V. Calculate the efficiency at
HL and FL. Determine also the maximum efficiency and the output power of the
generator at which this occurs. Assume VBC at HL is 1 V.

Sample Problem 3.13

A 30 kW series generator has an efficiency of 88% when operating at rated load. If the
stray power loss is 15% of the full load loses, calculate the maximum efficiency of the
generator. Assume that the stray power loss is constant and the other loss vary as the
square of the load.
Sample Problem 3.14
250 V shunt generator has a full load armature current of 40 A. Under this conditon
the losses are given as : Friction and windage losses = 200 W, shunt field copper losses =
100 W, core losses = 200W, brush contact = 120 W and armature copper losses = 400W.
for the operation of maximum efficiency, calculate:
a. Iamax
b. ILmax
c. Pomax
d. max. efficiency