How to Reset the Light Source Position

Problem: I have changed the position of the light source interactively using the mouse. I want to set the light source back to its original position. Solution: Use a macro command to reset the light source position: #!MC 1410 $!GLOBALTHREED LIGHTSOURCE { XYZDIRECTION { X = -0.2 Y = -0.2 Z = 0.959 } }


Customize the Color Palette

Problem: I want to change the default colors of the palette. Solution: Call a macro at Tecplot’s startup to overwrite the default colors in the palette.   To do so: Edit the tecplot.cfg file in Tecplot’s installation directory and include a set of $!BASICCOLOR macro commands to change the palette. In the palette, each color placeholder is referd to as CUSTOM#, where # is the placeholder number in the palette. […]

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Creating a GIF from a Sequence of PNGs

Question: When I use FFmpeg1 to convert a bunch of pngs to a GIF, it produces an ugly GIF (see the example script below and Figure 1). How do you use FFmpeg to convert a series of .png images to a high quality GIF in Windows? Example script (creates an ugly GIF):  ffmpeg.exe -r 20 -i HighQual_%6d.png -s:v 2152×1914 -f GIF ffmpeg_HighQual.gif     Solution: Both FFmpeg and ImageMagick2 convert can […]

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Calculating the Volume of an Iso-Surface

Question: How do I calculate the volume of a completely enclosed iso-surface? Solution: The volume of an iso-surface (no holes in it) may be calculated using 360’s data calculation, alteration and integration features by following these steps: A)   First, create a zone from your iso-surface: Display the iso-surface of choice by going to the side panel and clicking the Iso-Surfaces Details… button. Activate only one iso-surface group and ensure that […]

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Installing a Maintenance Release of 360 on Windows Does Not Work

Problem: Installing a maintenance release of 360 on Windows which replaces an existing 360 installation does not update 360 to the newer maintenance release version, even though the installer says the installation is successful. Solution: Close all running instances of Tecplot 360. A maintenance release overwrites the existing 360 installation. If 360 is running the operating system will prevent the executable from being upgraded. Confirm that all running instances of […]

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Min-Max Values of Transient Data

Problem: The min-max values shown in the Data Set Information dialog do not show values across all time. Solution: If you have transient data, the min-max for a variable is only for the “active zones” which unfortunately means only the current time step because the other time steps are not currently active. To see the min-max for the entire data set, run the PlotMinMaxContourOverTime.mcr macro from the Tecplot handyscripts GitHub […]

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Explanation of Cell-Centered data when using NumPy Arrays in PyTecplot

Problem: When reading data of ordered zones in PyTecplot, cell-centered data array lengths do not match the shape of the zone. A cell-centered variable with a 9,9,9 shape has a length of 900. Solution: This is to be expected. In Tecplot 360, for nodal ordered data, the number of nodes is the product of the I-, J-, and K-dimensions. For nodal data, the number of stored values is equal to […]

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Generating Animations One Frame at a Time in Parallel Using PyTecplot

Leveraging Python’s multiprocessing library when paired with PyTecplot scripting creates powerful efficiency. One such example is using multiprocessing to output a large amount of images in parallel. As a result, reducing the time needed to execute. This ParallelImageCreator.py script located in the Tecplot handyscripts GitHub saves every timestep of the active frame as an individual png image. It contains the following arguments: positional arguments: layoutfile Tecplot layout file to open […]

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Deleting Geometries in a Layout Template

Question: How does one replace the geometries (shapes, polylines, etc.) already present in a layout when a new data file is loaded into the layout file? Explanation of the Question: I created a layout file from a dataset that contains geometries, such as a relative wind velocity vector or aircraft body axes relative to wind axes. I want to create a template from this layout, but the geometries are now […]

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Calculating Grid K Normal Nodal Values

Question: The symmetry of nodal Grid K Unit Normal values differ from the comparable cell-centered values (see Figure 1). How are nodal Grid K Unit Normal values calculated?1 Explaining the Question: In Figure 1, at nodes 1, 6, 11, 16, and 21 the X Grid K Unit Normal vectors are equal. However, on the data row below it (nodes 2, 7, 12, 17, and 22), the components of the X […]

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