In an electric power generation system (20) which includes a turbine (22) and a turbine generator (25) connected to the turbine (22) along a common shaft (21), an alternating current (AC) induction exciter (30) is provided which is connected to the turbine generator (25) for starting the turbine generator (25). The AC induction exciter (30) preferably includes an AC input (31), an exciter rotor (36), and a stationary alternating current output provider (35) responsive to the AC input (31) and positioned in electrical communication with the exciter rotor (36) for providing an alternating current output (34) to the exciter rotor (36) so that a voltage is generated regardless of the speed of the exciter rotor (36). The stationary alternating current provider (35) preferably includes a rectifier (32) responsive to the AC input (31) for rectifying the alternating current to a direct current (DC) and a DC-to-AC converter (33) responsive to the rectifier (32) for converting the direct current input to an alternating current output (34). A method of starting a turbine generator (25) is also provided.
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