Electrical Braking system Types, Requirements, Advantages

Braking System - An Introduction

In electric traction a large amount kinetic energy has to be dissipated with a short period in case of emergency braking. In this post let us see
What are the requirements of the braking system?
What are the types of braking system?
What are the various types of Electrical braking?

The Advantages, Limitations and Disadvantages of the Electrical Braking system is discussed in separate post...

Requirements of Braking System:

  1. Braking should be simple, robust and easy to operate.
  2. It should require less maintenance
  3. It should be fast and reliable.
  4. The braking force must be capable of being controlled.
  5. The braking should be inexhaustible. ie repeated quick application of brake be possible without needing any relaxation.
  6. In case of emergency, it should make unfailing halt in the minimum possible distance.
  7. Application of brakes should be very gradual and smooth to avoid damage to the goods and discomfort to passengers.
  8. The system should apply brakes simultaneously overall the vehicles.

Types of Braking System:

[1] Electrical Braking

  • Plugging
  • Dynamic (or) Rheostatic braking
  • Regenerative braking

[2] Mechanical Braking

  • Compressed air brake (Pneumatic brake)
  • Magnetic brake
  • Vacuum brake

Various Types of Electrical Braking System:


  • This is the simplest type electric braking.
  • In this method, the torque of the motor is reversed.
  • It makes the motor and the driven machine to standstill condition.
  • A special device is required to cut off the supply as soon as the motor comes to rest.
  • The Plugging braking method can be applied to AC and DC motors.

Dynamic braking:

  • In this method of braking, the motor is disconnected from the supply
  • Then operated as a generator driven by the kinetic energy of the rotor and the load.
  • Thus the kinetic energy of rotation is converted into electrical energy
  • This electrical energy is dissipated in the external resistance connected across the motor at the braking instant.
  • The advantage of dynamic braking is that no energy is required from the supply to brake the motor.
  • The Dynamic braking method can be applied to brake DC motors, induction motors and synchronous motors.

Regenerative braking:

  • In the Regenerative braking method the motor is not disconnected from the supply.
  • It remains connected to it and feeds back the braking energy or it kinetic energy to the system.
  • As no energy is wasted in this method and it is supplied back to the system, thus overall energy is saved.
  • Thus the regenerative braking is better than Plugging and Dynamic braking.
  • This type of braking is used in traction whenever the train runs on down.
  • The regenerative braking is applied to DC shunt motor, series motor and 3-phase induction motors.

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