Altium Designer Documentation

Working with an Elliptical Arc Object on a Schematic Sheet in Altium Designer

Created: October 3, 2019 | Updated: July 14, 2021
All Contents

Parent page: Schematic Objects

A placed Elliptical Arc

Summary

An Elliptical Arc is a non-electrical drawing primitive that can be placed on a schematic sheet. It can be filled or unfilled.

Availability

The Elliptical Arc object is available for placement in both Schematic and Schematic Library Editors:

  • Schematic Editor - the following commands are available:
    • Choose Place » Drawing Tools » Elliptical Arc from the main menus.
    • Click the Elliptical Arc button () in the graphic objects drop-down on the Active Bar located at the top of the design space. (Click and hold an Active Bar button to access other related commands. Once a command has been used, it will become the top-most item on that section of the Active Bar.)
    • Right-click in the design spacethen choose Place » Drawing Tools » Elliptical Arc from the context menu.
    • Click the  button on the Utility Tools drop-down () of the Utilities toolbar.
  • Schematic Library Editor - the following commands are available:
    • Choose Place » Elliptical Arc from the main menus.
    • Click the Elliptical Arc button () in the graphic objects drop-down on the Active Bar menu located at the top of the design space. (Click and hold an Active Bar button to access other related commands. Once a command has been used, it will become the top-most item on that section of the Active Bar.)
    • Right-click and choose Place » Elliptical Arc from the context menu.
    • Click the  button on the Utility Tools drop-down () of the Utilities toolbar.

Placement

After launching the command, the cursor will change to a cross-hair and you will enter elliptical arc placement mode. Placement is made by performing the following sequence of actions:

  1. Click or press Enter to anchor the center point of the arc.
  2. Move the cursor to adjust the X radius of the arc, then click or press Enter to set it.
  3. Move the cursor to adjust the Y radius of the arc, then click or press Enter to set it.
  4. Move the cursor to adjust the first end point of the arc, then click or press Enter to anchor it.
  5. Move the cursor to change the position of the arc's other end point, then click or press Enter to anchor it and complete placement of the arc.
  6. Continue placing further elliptical arcs, or right-click or press Esc to exit placement mode.

Additional actions that can be performed during placement – while the arc is still floating on the cursor, and before the center point is anchored – are:

  • Press the Tab key to access an associated properties dialog, from where properties for the arc can be changed on-the-fly.
  • Press the Alt key to constrain the direction of movement to the horizontal or vertical axis, depending on the initial direction of movement.
  • Press the Spacebar to rotate the arc anti-clockwise or Shift+Spacebar for clockwise rotation. Rotation is in steps of 90°.
  • Press the X or Y keys to mirror the arc along the X-axis or Y-axis respectively.
While attributes can be modified during placement (Tab to access the Properties panel), keep in mind that these will become the default settings for further placement unless the Permanent option on the Schematic – Defaults page of the Preferences dialog is enabled. When this option is enabled, changes made will affect only the object being placed and subsequent objects placed during the same placement session.

Graphical Editing

This method of editing allows you to select a placed elliptical arc object directly in the design space and change its size, shape or location, graphically.

When an elliptical arc object is selected, the following editing handles are available:

A selected Elliptical Arc.

  • Click and drag A to change the vertical radius.
  • Click and drag B to change the horizontal radius.
  • Click and drag C to adjust the end points.
  • Click anywhere on the elliptical arc – away from editing handles – and drag to reposition it. While dragging, the elliptical arc can be rotated (Spacebar/Shift+Spacebar) or mirrored (X or Y keys to mirror along the X-axis or Y-axis respectively).
If attempting to graphically modify an object that has its Locked property enabled, a dialog will appear asking for confirmation to proceed with the edit. If the Protect Locked Objects option is enabled on the Schematic – Graphical Editing page of the Preferences dialog, and the Locked option for that design object is enabled as well, then that object cannot be selected or graphically edited. Click the locked object to select it then disable the Locked property in the List panel or disable the Protect Locked Objects option to graphically edit the object.

Non-Graphical Editing

The following methods of non-graphical editing are available:

Via the Elliptical Arc Dialog or Properties Panel

Panel page: Elliptical Arc Properties

This method of editing uses the associated Elliptical Arc dialog and the Properties panel mode to modify the properties of an Elliptical Arc object.

 The Elliptical Arc dialog, on the left, and the Elliptical Arc mode of the Properties panel on the right

After placement, the Elliptical Arc dialog can be accessed by:

  • Double-clicking on the placed elliptical arc object line.
  • Placing the cursor over the elliptical arc object line, right-clicking then choosing Properties from the context menu.

During placement, the Elliptical Arc mode of the Properties panel can be accessed by pressing the Tab key, though it is a modified version that only allows you to toggle the Width of the Elliptical Arc. Once the elliptical arc is placed, all options appear.

After placement, the Elliptical Arc mode of the Properties panel can be accessed in one of the following ways:

  • If the Properties panel is already active, by selecting the Elliptical Arc object.
  • After selecting the elliptical arc object, select the Properties panel from the Panels button in the bottom right section of the design space or by selecting View » Panels » Properties from the main menu.
If the Double Click Runs Interactive Properties option is disabled (default) on the Schematic - Graphical Editing page of the Preferences dialog, when the primitive is double-clicked or you right-click on a selected primitive then choose Properties, the dialog will open. When the Double Click Runs Interactive Properties option is enabled, the Properties panel will open. 

While the options are the same in the dialog and the panel, the order and placement of the options may differ slightly. 
Editing Multiple objects

The Properties panel supports multiple object editing, where the property settings that are identical in all currently selected objects may be modified. When multiples of the same object type are selected manually, via the Find Similar Objects dialog or through a Filter or List panel, a Properties panel field entry that is not shown as an asterisk (*) can be edited for all selected objects.

Via a List Panel

Panel pages: SCH List, SCHLIB List, SCH Filter, SCHLIB Filter

List panel displays design object types from one or more documents in tabular format, enabling quick inspection and modification of object attributes. Used in conjunction with appropriate filtering – by selecting object types (using the panel's Include options), or by using the applicable Filter panel or the Find Similar Objects dialog – it enables the display of just those objects falling under the scope of the active filter. The properties for the listed objects may then be edited directly in the List panel.

Found an issue with this document? Highlight the area, then use Ctrl+Enter to report it.

Contact Us

Contact our corporate or local offices directly.

We're sorry to hear the article wasn't helpful to you.
Could you take a moment to tell us why?
200 characters remaining
You are reporting an issue with the following selected text
and/or image within the active document: