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3.4.6 Control Panel

Control Panel

As soon as internal forces or deformations are displayed graphically, the panel appears in the work window, providing different options for display and control. To switch the panel on and off, select View → Control Panel in the menu or use the corresponding button.

The panel is similar to a toolbar: You can use the mouse to "grab" the panel in its title bar and move it into the workspace. To dock the panel, double-click its title bar or move it to the window frame or one of the directional buttons shown on the left.

The docked panel can be minimized with the Auto Hide shortcut menu option as soon as you click into the work window (see Figure 3.9). You can also use the pin button on the top right of the panel to select the minimize function. The panel opens in full size again when you move the pointer over the docked bar.

The control panel consists of the following tabs: Color scale, Factors, Filter, and Thicknesses, if available.

Color scale
Figure 3.16 Control panel, Color Scale tab with active Options dialog box

When a multi-color results display is set, the first tab shows the color scale with assigned ranges of values. Eleven color zones are set by default, covering the range between extreme values in equally spaced intervals.

To adjust the color scale, double-click one of the colors. You can also use the [Options] button available in the panel. The Options dialog box opens (Figure 3.16) where you can click the [Edit] button to access another dialog box for changing the ranges of colors and values.

Figure 3.17 Edit Isoband Value and Color Scales dialog box

Use the vertical sliders to the right of the values to reduce the number of color ranges at both ends of the color scale.

You can change colors individually by double-clicking a color field.

You can adjust scale values manually. Make sure you follow a strictly ascending or descending order. Use the buttons in the Value Scale dialog section to assign values. The buttons are defined as follows:

Table 3.4 Buttons in the Value Scale dialog section
Button Function


The eleven color zones are set to default.


All values in the text boxes are deleted.


The values are equidistantly interpolated between maximum and minimum depending on the number of color zones.

Fill Max/Min

For a reduced color scale, the intermediate values are calculated in relation to the absolute or manually entered extreme values.


The value scale is saved as a global sample.

The Apply to all result diagrams check box allows you to control if the current color scale for the results display of all load cases, load combinations, and result combinations is used. The value scale remains unaffected because a global assignment for deformations, forces, moments, and stresses is difficult. Click [Save] to save the modified color scale as user-defined.

Use the [Options] button as shown in Figure 3.16 to select further options in the Options dialog box.

Figure 3.18 Options dialog box, Limits +/ option

The reference to limit values allows you to accurately evaluate results within a defined zone. Exceeding or falling below limits is respectively represented by a different color. With the values set in Figure 3.18, the moments my are displayed in a fine gradation within the range of ±30 kNm/m. Values outside the defined zone appear in red or blue.

In the Options dialog box, select the Smooth color transition check box to make the distinct color zones disappear. This smoothed color scale can be set independently of the reference option selected for the result values.

Figure 3.19 Control panel, Factors tab

The second panel tab controls the scaling factors for the graphic display. Depending on the currently set results graphic, you can access text boxes for scaling the Deformation, Member diagrams, Surface diagrams, Section diagrams, Reaction forces, and Trajectories.

Figure 3.20 Control panel, Filter tab

With the Color Scale tab, you can filter result values in general. The Filter tab, however, allows you to select different result displays for specific surfaces, members, or solids.

The selection field below the button row specifies, which of the three object categories you can display result diagrams for. You have to enter the numbers of relevant members, surfaces, or solids into the Show diagrams for text box. With a click on the [Apply] button, you implement the filter in the graphic.

It is also possible to import object numbers from the graphic: First, select the members, surfaces, or solids (multiple selection via window or by holding down the [Ctrl] key) and click the [Import from Selection] button.

The filter settings of the panel also affect the objects in the results tables: For example, when you restrict the results display in the panel to two members, Table 4.6 Members - Internal Forces only lists the results of those two members.

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