How Does a Starter Generator Work?

A starter generator is an important component for many machines, ranging from a simple tractor to a Boeing aircraft. The starter component works to initiate the engine system before the generator component takes the lead to supply voltage to all Electrical Parts. Starter generators are important to kick off and speed up the system’s RPM, and then they can function as a generator once the initial stages of ignition are finished. In this blog, we will discuss the internal workings of a starter generator, as well as their overall importance to aircraft systems.

Within the Starter Generator, there are brushes, windings, a stator, and an armature. Wires are set up as to make a field coil through circular winding around the armature. As voltage passes through the wire coil, it moves into the brushes and the armature which then generates a magnetic field. This process begins to turn the stator, thus starting the engine. After the engine is started, a second set of windings allow the system to become a generator.

The generator is extremely vital as it is what provides power for all the Electrical Aircraft Components. As technology continues to progress, more and more systems are relying on electricity, making the need for a generator or other power source critical. Generators function to provide simultaneous voltage to each Electric Component in a correct amount to ensure efficient operation.

One disadvantage faced by the aircraft starter generator is that they require some form of battery to initiate. Direct current (DC) voltage is induced by the battery and then the starter actuates the generator. Once this is complete, there is no further need for the battery. Because of this, generators can continuously function even if the battery dies once started. Generators are also less sensitive to electrical spikes and reversed polarity, giving them advantages over other power systems such as alternators.

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