Result plotting made easier

I am always of the opinion that a large amount of small tweaks to the way we work every day will not only make our modelling more efficient, but also more enjoyable. So, here’s another relatively small tip that will speed up your modelling available in Dymola 2020 onwards.

Once you have run a simulation, historically there are two main ways to locate the variables and parameters you would like to plot.

  1. Navigate the variable browser manually. To reduce the size of the variable tree you can use the filtering options located to the top and bottom of the variable browser.
  2. Open the diagram layer within the simulation window, browsing through the model to find the object which contains the variable or parameter you want to plot. Right click on this object and select “Show variables”. This zooms into the part of the variable browser related to the object you right clicked on.

Both methods 1 and 2 rely on the user to navigate the variable browser. For the 2020 Dymola edition out soon, there is a new, more direct way of plotting the variables which you might find useful.

New method for quick plotting:

  1. Run the simulation
  2. Open the model diagram layer within the simualtion window
  3. Locate the object that contains the variables of interest
  4. Right click on the aforementioned object
  5. Select: Plot Variable. If you have not selected a plot window, Dymola will automatically open a new plot window for you.
Figure 1. Screenshot of the right-click context menu used for selecting the Plot Variable command.
Figure 1. Screenshot of the right-click context menu used for selecting the Plot Variable command.

Making these types of adjustments as the one shown in Figure 1 will streamline your workflow, allowing you to focus on the important parts of your job. We should try and make the computer do as many of the less productive tasks as possible for us. I always recommend exploring the context menus whenever you are going to perform an action, or taking note of any keyboard shortcut written by the item in the drop-down menus, like in Figure 2.

Figure 2. Taking note of the shortcuts in the menu item lines for next use of the command will save you time.
Figure 2. Taking note of the shortcuts in the menu item lines for next use of the command will save you time.

Be wary that the location of the context menu item or the shortcut keys might vary slightly from one Dymola version to the other!

I hope this helps; happy modelling to you all!

Written by: Alessandro Picarelli – Engineering Director

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