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Configure Mechanics Explorer

You can customize the display of Mechanics Explorer. Settings you can change include:

  • Background color

  • View point

  • View convention

  • Number of display windows for a model

  • Visibility of frames and centers of mass

Change Background Color

To change the background color, use the following procedure. The procedure uses the sm_four_bar as an example.

  1. At the MATLAB® command line, enter sm_four_bar.

      Note:   Alternatively, open a SimMechanics™ model of your choice.

  2. In the Simulink® Editor window for the model, select Simulation > Update Diagram.

      Note:   Mechanics Explorer opens with a display of your model against the default grey background.

  3. In the Mechanics Explorer toolbar, click the icon.

  4. In the Select a Color dialog box, select a color. Click HSV, HSL, RGB, or CMYK tabs to specify a color in these formats.

  5. Click OK.

  6. In the Mechanics Explorer toolbar, click the icon.

Clicking the icon saves the current Mechanics Explorer configuration to the SimMechanics model. If you close the Mechanics Explorer window and update the model, Mechanics Explorer opens with the new configuration.

Change View Point

Mechanics Explorer provides seven view presets that you can use to change the perspective of a model. Each preset has an icon in the Mechanics Explorer toolbar .

Click an icon to select the corresponding view preset. The following table describes the seven presets in Mechanics Explorer.

View IconView NameView Description
Front viewDisplay model ZX plane with Y axis pointing into screen
Back viewDisplay model ZX plane with Y axis pointing out of screen
Top viewDisplay model XY plane with Z axis pointing out of screen.
Bottom viewDisplay model XY plane with Z axis pointing into screen
Left viewDisplay model YZ plane with X axis pointing into screen
Right viewDisplay model YZ plane with X axis pointing out of screen
Isometric viewDisplay model in 3-D with axes X, Y, and Z at 120° to each other.

The following figure shows the seven view presets in Mechanics Explorer. The top row shows the following four presets ordered left to right: front, bottom, top, bottom. The bottom row shows the following three presets ordered left to right: left, right, isometric.

Change View Convention

You can choose from three view conventions:

  • Z axis up—displays the model ZX plane in front view

  • Z axis down—displays the model YZ plane in front view

  • Y axis up—displays the model XY plane in front view

To select a view convention, click the View convention drop-down menu, and select one of the three view conventions. The following figure shows a four-bar model in front view using the three view conventions. The top row shows view conventions Z up and Z down ordered left to right. The bottom row shows view convention Y up.

Display Multiple Screens

You can divide the Mechanics Explorer screen into multiple screens, each with an independent view of a model. The Mechanics Explorer toolbar provides icons to split the active window into two windows vertically or horizontally.

Each time you split the active window, you generate two smaller windows. You can split the active window an arbitrary number of times to generate as many view screens as you need. The following table describes the screen split icons.

IconIcon Description
Split the active screen into four standard views
Display a single screen
Split the active screen vertically into two screens
Split the active screen horizontally into two screens

The following image shows Mechanics Explorer with four standard views, in single screen mode, with two vertically split screens, and with two horizontally split screens.

Toggle Visibility of Frames and Mass Centers

The Mechanics Explorer provides icons so that you can display and hide frames and center-of-mass markers.

To toggle frame visibility, click the icon.

To toggle the visibility of center-of-mass markers, click the icon.

The following figure shows a four-bar model that displays frames and center-of-mass markers.

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