Symbols and components

One intelligent symbol

On some occasions, users may want to create drawings that display symbols horizontally. At other times, users may want to create vertical ones. Electra makes it easy to do both, with one single symbol. Symbols in Electra are intelligent, and can be rotated vertically or horizontally with a simple right click. Rotated symbols automatically have their text and descriptions moved to the correct positions. Certain symbols are even smarter, for example, the motor symbol will allow users to change the contact, output and connection type with just a single right click. Drop a symbol onto a drawing and right click to explore for more options.

Intelligent Symbol
Intelligent Symbol

Placing and duplicating symbols

To place a symbol on a drawing, simply drag and drop a symbol from a stencil and drop it on your drawing. Symbols dropped from stencils inherits all formatting and data from it's source symbol in the stencil.

To duplicate a symbol (2 methods):

  • Method 1: Click on a symbol in a drawing, then press CTRL + C key to copy and press CTRL + V key to paste.
  • Method 2: Click on a symbol in a drawing, press CTRL key, drag and drop, then release the CTRL key.

Duplicated symbols inherits all formatting and data from the source symbol. For faster circuit design, duplicating symbols are recommended, especially when users wanted to preserve text or reference formatting.

Intelligent inheritance

When a symbol or wire is duplicated from another, the new symbol will inherit all formatting and data from the source symbol. For example, if you assign a relay symbol to a Siemens component, when you duplicate this symbol, the new symbol will automatically be assigned to a Siemens component. Intelligent Inheritance allows users to set data to one symbol and re-use these data simply by duplicating the symbol.

Intelligent automatic numbering

When a symbol is dropped on a drawing, Electra will automatically and intelligently rename the new symbol. If a symbol is dropped from a stencil, Electra will always rename the symbol by using its default reference, as listed on the source symbol in the stencil. If a symbol is duplicated from an existing symbol, the new symbol will inherit all formatting and Electra will rename using the existing reference format.

The same also applies to wires. If a wire is dragged from a stencil, Electra will search through its internal sorted list and rename the new wire to the next sequential number. If a wire is duplicated from an existing wire, the new wire will inherit all formatting and Electra will rename using the existing wire name format.

Intelligent Automatic Numbering
Intelligent Automatic Numbering

Editing symbol reference

To edit the symbol reference (2 methods):

  • Method 1: Click on a symbol and type reference directly.
  • Method 2: Double click or right click on a symbol and select "Edit Reference".

The reference window

Included on the Reference window are real time cross reference information on shapes that you have already placed on your drawing. Click on a reference to display shapes and locations for that reference.

The Reference Window

Displaying pin names

To hide pin names, right click on a symbol which the pin names are shown, select "Hide Pin Names". Similarly, to show pin names, right click on a symbol which the pin names are hidden, select "Show Pin Names". Alternatively, pin names can be hidden or shown on an entire page by clicking on menu Home | Layers | Layer Properties, and modifying the Pin layer to show or hide pin names.

Display Pin Names

Automatic pin names

When symbols are dropped on a drawing, Electra automatically allocate the next available pin set to the symbol. When pin sets are not available or fully used, Electra displays the pin names as red. Users can right click on a symbol and select "Set Pin Names" to manually allocate another pin set, show or hide pin names or add and edit pin sets.

Automatic Pin Names
Automatic Pin Names

Modifying pin sets

  • To modify pin sets, right click on a symbol, then select Set Pin Names.
  • To assign a pin set, click on a pin set, then click OK.
  • To add, edit or delete a pin set, right click on any pin set and select edit, add or delete.
Modifying Pin Sets
Modifying Pin Sets

Understanding symbols and components

Symbols in Electra represents real world components, and the relationship can be any of the following:

Symbols and Components Relationship
Symbols and Components Relationship

In Electra, all symbols with the same reference are initially organized into a single group, where they can be assigned to one or more components. Users can then divide the same symbols into further groupings, and each group can then to be assigned to one or more components.

Symbols and Components
Symbols and Components

Assigning components

To assign a component to a single symbol:

  • Right click on a symbol and select Edit Reference.
  • On the Reference Window, click on Component button.
Assign Components
Assign Components

Managing components

To assign and manage all symbols and components:

  • Click on menu Manage Components.
Manage Component Window
Manage Component Window

By default, all symbols with the same reference are initially organized into a single group. Users can select to move some symbols to another group by unchecking the grouping box. Once unchecked, the symbols will automatically appear in another group ready to be assigned to another component. To move back symbols to it's original group, simply select the original group and check required symbols.

Manage Components

Selecting a component

When users click the "Select" button on the Manage Components window, the Select Component window will be displayed:

Select Component

The component database

The Component database stores all component specifications so that they can be used and re-used on multiple projects and drawings. Once a component is selected, it's specifications is then transferred and stored on the drawing itself for portability. Components stored on the database are divided into categories and a single component can appear in more than one category.

To access the component database:

  • Click on menu Component Database.
Component database window
Component database window

The autolocation shape

The AutoLocation symbol displays the location of your references automatically in real time, all without user interference. Locations will update automatically when you move symbols, even across multiple pages. Right click on an AutoLocation shape to jump to monitored references. Multiple AutoLocation symbols can be used to monitor the same reference on multiple pages.

AutoLocation Symbol