MATLAB Examples

Call Local Functions Using Function Handles

This example shows how to create handles to local functions. If a function returns handles to local functions, you can call the local functions outside of the main function. This approach allows you to have multiple, callable functions in a single file.

Create the following function in a file, ellipseVals.m, in your working folder. The function returns a struct with handles to the local functions.

% Copyright 2015 The MathWorks, Inc.

function fh = ellipseVals
fh.focus = @computeFocus;
fh.eccentricity = @computeEccentricity;
fh.area = @computeArea;

function f = computeFocus(a,b)
f = sqrt(a^2-b^2);

function e = computeEccentricity(a,b)
f = computeFocus(a,b);
e = f/a;

function ae = computeArea(a,b)
ae = pi*a*b;

Invoke the function to get a struct of handles to the local functions.

h = ellipseVals
h = 

  struct with fields:

           focus: @computeFocus
    eccentricity: @computeEccentricity
            area: @computeArea

Call a local function using its handle to compute the area of an ellipse.

ans =


Alternatively, you can use the localfunctions function to create a cell array of function handles from all local functions automatically. This approach is convenient if you expect to add, remove, or modify names of the local functions.