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When the load on the supply system changes, the terminal voltage of the alternator also
varies due to the changed voltage drop in the synchronous reactance of the armature. The
voltage of the alternator can be kept constant by changing the field current of the alternator
in accordance with the load. This is known as excitation control method. The excitation of
alternator can be controlled by the use of automatic or hand operated regulator acting in the
field circuit of the alternator. The first method is preferred in modern practice. There are two
main types of automatic voltage regulators viz.
(i) Tirril Regulator
(ii) Brown-Boveri Regulator
These regulators are based on the overshooting the mark principle to enable them to
respond quickly to the rapid fluctuations of load. When the load on the alternator increases,
the regulator produces an increase in excitation more than is ultimately necessary. Before the
voltage has the time to increase to the value corresponding to the increased excitation, the
regulator reduces the excitation to the proper value.