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Parent page: PCB Objects
A Region, also known as a Solid Region, is a polygonal-shaped primitive object that can be placed on any layer. It can be configured to be positive, for example placed as a copper region; or negative, for example placed as a polygon pour cutout. By placing it as a negative on the multi-layer, it can be placed as a board cutout.
A region can have any number of sides and vertices (corners). It can be placed on a signal layer to define an area of solid copper, to be used to provide shielding or to carry large currents. Positive regions can be combined with tracks or arc segments and be connected to a net. In the PCB Library editor regions can be used to create custom pad shapes on copper layers, or special mask shapes on the solder and paste masks. On non-electrical layers regions can be used to define custom shapes for tasks such as logos.
A region can also be used to define no-go areas for component placement and routing, which are also known as keep-outs. These can apply to all layers by placing the region on the Keep-out layer, or they can be layer-specific by placing the region on a signal layer and enabling the Keep-out option for that region.
When placed as a negative, a region can create a cutout (a void) in a polygon pour. In this mode the region will not be filled with copper when the polygon is poured. When used as a negative region for a board cutout (by placing it on the multi-layer), it defines an area that becomes a hole through the finished board. Board cutout regions are transferred to Gerber and ODB++ files for manufacturing purposes.
Regions are available for placement in both the PCB editor and the PCB Library editors by selecting Place » Solid Region or Place » Keepout » Solid Region from the main menu.
After launching the command, the cursor will change to a crosshair and you will enter region placement mode. Placement is made by performing the following sequence of actions:
Additional actions that can be performed during placement include:
While placing a region there are 5 available corner modes, 4 of which also have corner direction sub-modes. During placement:
Using the Place » Keepout » Solid Region command, a region can be placed as a layer-specific keepout object or an all-layer keepout to act, for example, as a placement or routing barrier. Objects defined as keepouts are ignored during output generation, such as photo plotting and printing.
Keepout properties and restrictions can be assigned using the Keepout - Region dialog.
To access the Keepout - Region dialog, press Tab during placement. After placement, access the dialog by double-clicking on the Keepout Region or right-click and select Properties from the context menu.
A Region can also act as a polygon cutout. To place a polygon cutout:
A Region can also act as a board cutout. To place a board cutout:
Regions contain to points, or "handles" with which to edit the shape of the region.
An existing region can be re-shaped by moving these handles, or vertices, located at each corner, or at the center of each edge.
To modify the region shape:
In addition to vertex editing, designers can also use the Modify Region Border command to easily change the shape of polygons. The command is run by right-clicking on the desired polygon and selecting Polygon Actions » Modify Polygon Border. Once the command is launched, the cursor becomes a crosshair. Each time you click, a new vertex is added. As during region placement, the Shift+Spacebar shortcuts can be used to change corner shapes.
The following methods of non-graphical editing are available:
Dialog page: Region
This method of editing uses the following dialog to modify the properties of a region object.
The Region dialog can be accessed during placement by pressing the Tab key.
After placement, the dialog can be accessed in one of the following ways:
When editing a Polygon Cutout via the Region dialog, the only properties available for editing are Layer an Vertices.
An Inspector panel enables the designer to interrogate and edit the properties of one or more design objects in the active document. Used in conjunction with appropriate filtering, the panel can be used to make changes to multiple objects of the same kind, from one convenient location.
A List panel allows the designer to display design objects from one or more documents in tabular format, enabling quick inspection and modification of object attributes. Used in conjunction with appropriate filtering, it enables the display of just those objects falling under the scope of the active filter – allowing the designer to target and edit multiple design objects with greater accuracy and efficiency.
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