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In this paper, the self and mutual inductances of an exciter for a genset alternator are estimated for different rotor angular positions by the use of finite-element (FE) techniques. These inductances, which are described by complex functions, are measured using a stationary test and compared with calculated values. A real-time computer model for the exciter, the load and the diode bridge mounted on the rotor is then proposed, and a sample of performance prediction and measurement for a specific transient condition of the exciter is presented here as confirmation of the method. The model thus validated is ultimately to be included in the evolving total system model used for simulation of genset transient and steady-state performance.