Set Block Parameter Values

Blocks have numeric parameters that determine how they calculate output values. To control the calculations that blocks perform, you can specify parameter values. For example, a Gain block has a Gain parameter, and a Transfer Fcn block has multiple parameters that represent the transfer function coefficients.

You can use numbers, variables, and expressions to set block parameter values. Choose a technique based on your modeling goals. For example, you can:

  • Share parameter values between blocks and models by creating variables.

  • Control parameter characteristics such as data type and dimensions by creating parameter objects.

  • Model an algorithm as code by using mathematical expressions.

Set block parameters using the property inspector or the block dialog box. For more information, see Block Parameters and Properties in Simulink. To set block sample times, see Specify Sample Time.

    Tip   You can use the Model Explorer to make batch changes to many block parameter values at once. For more information, see Model Explorer Overview.

Programmatically Access Parameter Values

To programmatically access block parameter values, use the get_param and set_param functions. You can use this technique to adjust parameter values between simulation runs, or during a simulation, when you simulate a model programmatically.

Suppose you create a model named myModel that contains a Constant block named My Constant. Next, you use the block dialog box to set the Constant value parameter to 15. To programmatically return the parameter value, use the function get_param. You specify the block path and the equivalent programmatic parameter name, Value.

paramValue = get_param('myModel/My Constant','Value')
paramValue =


To programmatically change the value, for example to 25, use the function set_param. Use the character vector '25' as the input to the function.

set_param('myModel/My Constant','Value','25')

For a list of programmatic names of block parameters, see Block-Specific Parameters.

For more information about programmatic simulation, see Run Simulations Programmatically.

To avoid using the get_param and set_param functions, use the name of a MATLAB® variable or Simulink.Parameter object as the parameter value, and change the value of the variable or object at the command prompt. See Share and Reuse Block Parameter Values by Creating Variables.

Specify Parameter Values

GoalBlock Parameter ValueDescription

Store the parameter value in the model file.


[1.2 2.3 4.5; 7.9 8.7 6.5]

2 + 3i

Literal numeric value. Specify a scalar, vector, matrix, or multidimensional array. Use i to specify complex values.

  • Access the parameter value without having to locate the block in the model.

  • Change the parameter value without having to modify the model file.

  • Share the parameter value between blocks or between models.

  • Identify the parameter by a specific name when sweeping or tuning the value.


MATLAB variable that exists in a workspace.

For more information, see Share and Reuse Block Parameter Values by Creating Variables.

  • Avoid name clashes between workspace variables.

  • Organize parameter values using hierarchies and meaningful names.

  • Reduce the number of workspace variables that a model uses.


Field of parameter structure.

For more information, see Organize Related Block Parameter Definitions in Structures.

Use a portion of a matrix or array variable. For example, set the parameters of a n-D Lookup Table block.


Index operation.

  • Define parameter characteristics, such as data type, complexity, units, allowed value range, and dimensions, separately from the parameter value.

  • Define a system constant with custom documentation.

  • Create a tunable parameter in the generated code.


Parameter object.

For more information, see Use Parameter Objects.

  • Model a complicated algorithm or subroutine by using code instead of blocks.

  • Reduce block population in a model.

  • Use MATLAB operators and functions to perform calculations in a model.

  • Write a custom MATLAB function that calculates parameter values.

5^3.2 - 1/3

myParam * myOtherparam + sin(0.78*pi)


Expression or custom function.

For more information, see Use MATLAB Functions and Custom Functions.

Specify a block parameter value by using a data type other than double.




Typed or untyped expression, numeric MATLAB variable, or parameter object.

For more information about controlling parameter data types, see Control Block Parameter Data Types.

Use Parameter Objects

Parameter objects are Simulink.Parameter objects and objects of the subclasses that you create. The parameter object exists in a workspace such as the base workspace or a data dictionary.

You can use parameter objects to define system constants. For example, use a parameter object to represent the radius of the Earth. Use the properties of the object to specify the physical units and to document the purpose of the value.

Create parameter objects to prepare your model for code generation. You can configure parameter objects to appear as tunable global variables in the generated code. You can also control the parameter data type through the object.

To create and use parameter objects in models, see Data Objects. For information about using variables to set block parameter values, see Share and Reuse Block Parameter Values by Creating Variables.

Use MATLAB Functions and Custom Functions

You can set a block parameter value to an expression that calls MATLAB functions and operators such as sin and max. You can also call your own custom functions that you write on the MATLAB path.

Suppose that a section of your block algorithm uses variables to calculate a single constant number used by the rest of the algorithm. You can perform the calculation by creating multiple blocks.

Instead, create a single Constant block that uses an expression written in MATLAB code. This technique reduces the size of the block algorithm and improves readability.

You can model a complicated portion of an algorithm by using an expression instead of many blocks. To operate on an existing signal, use a mathematical expression as the value of a parameter in an algorithmic block, such as the Gain parameter of a Gain block.

With expressions, you can also call your custom functions to set block parameter values. Suppose that you write a MATLAB function that calculates optimal P, I, and D parameters for a control algorithm by accepting a single input number.

You can parameterize a PID Controller block by using the function to set the parameter values.

Considerations for Other Modeling Goals

Choose a technique to set block parameter values based on your modeling goals.

GoalFeatures or ProductsBest Practice
Run multiple simulations quickly.Rapid accelerator simulations when you set 'RapidAcceleratorUpToDateCheck' to 'off'.Use variables or parameter objects to set block parameter values. This technique helps you to identify tunable parameters in the structure that Simulink.BlockDiagram.buildRapidAcceleratorTarget generates. See Parallel Simulations Using Parfor: Parameter Sweep in Rapid Accelerator Mode and Simulink.BlockDiagram.buildRapidAcceleratorTarget.
Override parameter values during testing.Simulink® Test™Use variables or parameter objects to set block parameter values. See Parameter Overrides.
Estimate and optimize parameter values.Simulink Design Optimization™

Use variables or parameter objects to set block parameter values.

To estimate or optimize a parameter that uses a data type other than double, use a parameter object to separate the value from the data type.

For parameter estimation, see Parameter Estimation. For response optimization, see Optimize Model Response.

Generate code from a model. Simulate an external program through SIL/PIL or External mode simulations.Simulink Coder™

Use parameter objects to set block parameter values. This technique helps you to declare and identify tunable parameters in the generated code and to control parameter data types. See Block Parameter Representation in the Generated Code.

When you use expressions to set block parameter values, avoid using operators and functions that result in loss of tunability in the generated code. See Tunable Expression Limitations.

See Also

Related Examples

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