Before discussing how a rotating magnetic field will cause a motor rotor to turn, we must first find out how a rotating magnetic field is produced. Figure 1 illustrates a three-phase stator to which a three-phase AC current is supplied.
The windings are connected in wye. The two windings in each phase are wound in the same direction. At any instant in time, the magnetic field generated by one particular phase will depend on the current through that phase. If the current through that phase is zero, the resulting magnetic field is zero. If the current is at a maximum value, the resulting field is at a maximum value. Since the currents in the three windings are 120° out of phase, the magnetic fields produced will also be 120° out of phase. The three magnetic fields will combine to produce one field, which will act upon the rotor. In an AC induction motor, a magnetic field is induced in the rotor opposite in polarity of the magnetic field in the stator. Therefore, as the magnetic field rotates in the stator, the rotor also rotates to maintain its alignment with the stator’s magnetic field. The remainder of this chapter’s discussion deals with AC induction motors.
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The Electrical Science Fundamentals Handbook was developed to assist nuclear facility operating contractors provide operators, maintenance personnel, and the technical staff with the necessary fundamentals training to ensure a basic understanding of electrical theory, terminology, and application. The handbook includes information on alternating current (AC) and direct current (DC) theory, circuits, motors, and generators; AC power and reactive components; batteries; AC and DC voltage regulators; transformers; and electrical test instruments and measuring devices. This information will provide personnel with a foundation for understanding the basic operation of various types of DOE nuclear facility electrical equipment.
• Module 12 - AC Motors
This module explains the theory of operation of AC motors and discusses the various types of AC motors and their application.
• Module 13 - Transformers
This module introduces transformer theory and includes the types of transformers, voltage/current relationships, and application.
• Module 14 - Test Instruments and Measuring Devices
This module describes electrical measuring and test equipment and includes the parameters measured and the principles of operation of common instruments.
• Module 15 - Electrical Distribution Systems
This module describes basic electrical distribution systems and includes characteristics of system design to ensure personnel and equipment safety.
The information contained in this handbook is by no means all encompassing. An attempt to present the entire subject of electrical science would be impractical. However, the Electrical Science handbook does present enough information to provide the reader with a fundamental knowledge level sufficient to understand the advanced theoretical concepts presented in other subject areas, and to better understand basic system and equipment operations.