4.1 Module overview

The Prepare module allows you to virtually design the experiment. An overview of some of the key features in the Prepare module is provided in the following figure.

Overview of Prepare Module

3D Mode vs List Mode

The Prepare module contains two modes: 3D Mode and List Mode. 3D Mode is centered around the 3D viewer, with tab widgets on the right for the Item overview, Properties, Comments, Measurement Info, and VP Quality. List mode allows for bulk editing of coordinates and orientations in a table that resembles working in, for instance, Excel.

DAQ and Export buttons

The Prepare module has two buttons in blue with special functions. See also in the right upper corner of the figure above.

  • DAQ: this opens the measurement wizard, which is typically accessed from the Measure module. In some cases, configuring a measurement system can be considered part of the preparation too. Also, when connected to an MKII, channel settings can be pushed to the MKII, for instance, to configure the system for operational testing.
  • Export: this opens the export wizard. Although all available export options are always shown, two exports are particularly useful here. The Excel option exports the instrumentation to Excel sheets, which can, for instance, be used to configure a data acquisition system, or write off-line instructions for setting up the measurement. The MATLAB option can be used to export all sensor and impact definitions, as well as all geometries in the project.

DIRAC-file as a measurement instruction

After successfully completing the steps in the Prepare module, one should have made the most critical decisions up-front that may otherwise have popped up in the lab, or even after measurement. The DIRAC file containing this fully-prepared “design of experiment” is very well suited to hand over to other colleagues that may carry out (parts of) the measurement campaign. To open a DIRAC file in Prepare mode, only a dir-prepare license is needed.

Undo and redo

Actions in the Prepare module can now be reversed and/or redone. When working on a design of experiment, actions such as positioning the sensors, aligning the Virtual Points or setting the impacts can be undone and redone in a user-friendly manner. Undo and redo actions are available in the renewed title bar as two buttons; the on-hover tooltip reveals the action that can be undone/redone. One may also use the key commands CTRL+Z and CTRL+Y.

The Undo/redo features include the following:

  • Moving/rotating any object in the 3D viewer
  • Changing properties in the Property widget
  • Changing properties in List Mode
  • Adding objects
  • Removing objects
  • Editing multiple objects at once

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