Documentation

Simscape Component

Deploy Simscape language component as custom block in model diagram

Library

Utilities

Description

The Simscape Component block lets you generate a Simscape™ block directly from a textual component file, skipping the library build process.

You can use the ssc_build command to generate a custom block library from a complete package of Simscape component files. However, you can also do on-the-fly conversion of a component file directly into a custom block in your model by using a Simscape Component block.

To deploy a component file directly into a block diagram:

  1. Open the Simscape > Utilities library and add the Simscape Component block to your model. At first, the block does not point to any component file. Therefore, it does not have any ports, and the block icon states it is Unspecified.

  2. Double-click the block to open the source file selector dialog box.

  3. Browse to the desired Simscape language component file. The file does not have to be in a package. However, the directory where the file resides has to be on the MATLAB® path. If the file resides in a package, then the package parent directory must be on the MATLAB path.

  4. If you selected a file that is not on the MATLAB path, a File Not On Path dialog opens. Click Add.

  5. Click OK to close the file selector dialog box. The block icon changes, and the block acquires the ports, parameters, and variables based on the selected source component.

    If you now double-click the block, its dialog box has all the same elements as if it was generated from the component file through a library build process: name, description, parameters, variables, and a link to Source code. However, the block dialog box has an additional Choose source button that lets you point the block to a different component file.

Source File Selector Dialog Box

When a Simscape Component block points to a valid Simscape language component file, its dialog box has the name, description, parameters, and variables defined by that source file. The source file selector dialog box opens in the following cases:

  • When you add a new Simscape Component block to your model, to let you select the source component file.

  • When you click the Choose source button in an existing Simscape Component block dialog, to let you select a different source component file.

  • When you open a model with an unresolved Simscape Component block (because the underlying source component is no longer on the path) and double-click the block, to let you resolve the source location or select a different source component file.

A source component file can be located:

  • In the current working directory

  • In a directory on the MATLAB path

  • In a package, with the package parent directory being on the MATLAB path

To specify the source file, you can either browse to it or type its name directly into the name field of the selector dialog box:

  • If you type the name of the file, it must satisfy the location requirements, listed above. If the file resides in a package, you must provide the file name relative to the package root. If these conditions are not met when you type the file name, the source location cannot be resolved, and you get an error message.

  • If you browse to the source file, you can select any Simscape source or protected file (that is, any file with the .ssc or .sscp extension). However, if the selected file does not satisfy the location requirements, a File Not On Path dialog opens. Click Add to add the appropriate directory to the MATLAB path and resolve the source location. If you click Cancel, the source location cannot be resolved and the source selection process is cancelled.

When the source location is successfully resolved, the name of the source file appears in the text field of the source file selector dialog box. The block name, description (if available), and the link to source code appear in the preview pane. Click OK or Apply to point the Simscape Component block to the selected source file:

  • Clicking Apply updates the block icon, closes the file selector dialog box, and opens the block dialog box, which contains the parameters and variables.

  • Clicking OK updates the block icon and closes the file selector dialog box, but does not open the block dialog box. Double-click the block if you wish to view or modify the block parameters and variables.

The buttons next to the text field in the source file selector dialog box perform the following actions:

Opens a file browser, to let you select the source component file. By default, the browser displays only the files with the .ssc or .sscp extension. If the Simscape Component block currently points to a source file, and the source location is successfully resolved, the browser opens in the directory where that source file resides. Otherwise, the browser opens in the current working directory.
Refreshes the preview pane of the source file selector dialog box. If you type the source component name directly into the text field of the selector dialog box, the preview pane does not automatically update. If you want to preview the block name, description, or source code of the source component before finalizing the selection, click this button.
Opens the block dialog box, which contains the parameters and variables based on the selected component. This button and the Choose source button let you toggle between the file selector and the block dialog box for the Simscape Component block.

Block Icon Appearance

The Simscape Component block icon appearance changes depending on the block state.

Simscape Component block in the library.
Simscape Component block just added to the model, when it is not pointing to a source component yet.
Simscape Component block pointing to a valid component file. The block ports are defined by the underlying component. By default, the block icon displays the component name (for example, my_resistor). If there is an image file with a matching name (for example, my_resistor.png) in the same directory as the source component file, this image replaces the default block icon. For more information, see Customizing the Block Icon.
Simscape Component block pointing to an unresolved component file. This can happen if the source component file got moved, or if it is no longer on the path. The Add button adds the folder to the path only for the duration of the current MATLAB session. If you do not save the path and then open the model in a subsequent session, the Simscape Component block becomes unresolved. If the source component is located in the current working directory, then there is no requirement for it to be on the path. However, if you later try to open the model from another directory, the Simscape Component block also becomes unresolved.

Introduced in R2016a

Was this topic helpful?