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polarscatter

Scatter chart in polar coordinates

  • Polar scatter chart

Description

example

polarscatter(th,r) plots th versus r and displays a circular marker at each data point. th and r must be vectors of the same length. You must specify th in radians.

  • To plot one set of points, specify th and r as vectors of equal length.

  • To plot multiple sets of points within the same polar axes, specify at least one of th or r as a matrix.

polarscatter(th,r,sz) sets the marker sizes, where sz specifies the area of each marker in points squared. To draw all the markers with the same size, specify sz as a scalar. To draw the markers with different sizes, as a vector or a matrix.

example

polarscatter(th,r,sz,c) specifies the marker colors. You can specify one color for all the markers, or you can vary the color. For example, you can plot all red circles by specifying c as 'red'.

polarscatter(___,mkr) sets the marker symbol. For example, '+' displays cross markers. Specify the marker symbol after any of the input argument combinations in the previous syntaxes.

example

polarscatter(___,'filled') fills the marker interiors.

polarscatter(___,Name,Value) modifies the appearance of the scatter plot using one or more name-value pair arguments. For example, you can use semi-transparent markers by specifying 'FaceAlpha' and a scalar value between 0 and 1.

polarscatter(pax,___) plots into the polar axes specified by pax instead of into the current axes.

example

ps = polarscatter(___) returns the Scatter object or an array of Scatter objects.. Use ps to modify the appearance of the Scatter object after it is created. For a list of properties, see Scatter Properties.

Examples

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Create a scatter chart in polar coordinates.

th = pi/4:pi/4:2*pi;
r = [19 6 12 18 16 11 15 15];
polarscatter(th,r)

Figure contains an axes. The axes contains an object of type scatter.

Create a scatter chart that uses filled markers by specifying the optional input argument, 'filled'. Set the marker size to 75 points squared.

th = linspace(0,2*pi,20);
r = rand(1,20);
sz = 75;
polarscatter(th,r,sz,'filled')

Figure contains an axes. The axes contains an object of type scatter.

Create a scatter chart with markers of varying sizes and colors. Specify the optional size and color input arguments as vectors. Use unique values in the color vector to specify the different colors you want. The values map to colors in the colormap.

th = pi/4:pi/4:2*pi;
r = [19 6 12 18 16 11 15 15];
sz = 100*[6 15 20 3 15 3 6 40];
c = [1 2 2 2 1 1 2 1];
polarscatter(th,r,sz,c,'filled','MarkerFaceAlpha',.5)

Figure contains an axes. The axes contains an object of type scatter.

Create data where the angle values are in degrees. Since polarscatter requires angle values in radians, convert the values to radians before plotting using deg2rad.

th = linspace(0,360,50);
r = 0.005*th/10;
th_radians = deg2rad(th);
polarscatter(th_radians,r)

Figure contains an axes. The axes contains an object of type scatter.

Combine two scatter charts in the same polar axes using the hold command. Add a legend with a description of each chart.

th = pi/6:pi/6:2*pi;
r1 = rand(12,1);
polarscatter(th,r1,'filled')

hold on 
r2 = rand(12,1);
polarscatter(th,r2,'filled')
hold off

legend('Series A','Series B')

Figure contains an axes. The axes contains 2 objects of type scatter. These objects represent Series A, Series B.

Create a scatter chart and assign the scatter object to the variable ps.

th = pi/6:pi/6:2*pi;
r = rand(12,1);
ps = polarscatter(th,r,'filled')

Figure contains an axes. The axes contains an object of type scatter.

ps = 
  Scatter with properties:

             Marker: 'o'
    MarkerEdgeColor: 'none'
    MarkerFaceColor: 'flat'
           SizeData: 36
          LineWidth: 0.5000
          ThetaData: [1x12 double]
              RData: [1x12 double]
              ZData: [1x0 double]
              CData: [0 0.4470 0.7410]

  Show all properties

Use ps to modify properties of the scatter object after it is created.

ps.Marker = 'square';
ps.SizeData = 200;
ps.MarkerFaceColor = 'red';
ps.MarkerFaceAlpha = .5;

Figure contains an axes. The axes contains an object of type scatter.

Input Arguments

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Theta values, specified as a scalar, vector, or matrix. The ThetaData property of the scatter object stores the theta values.

The size and shape of th depends on the shape of your data. This table describes the most common situations.

Type of PlotHow to Specify Coordinates
Single point

Specify th and r as scalars. For example:

polarscatter(pi/2,0.5)

One set of points

Specify th and r as any combination of row or column vectors of the same length. For example:

polarscatter([0 pi/4 pi/2],[1; 2; 3])

Multiple sets of points that are different colors

If all the sets share the same theta or rho values, specify the shared coordinates as a vector and the other coordinates as a matrix. The length of the vector must match one of the dimensions of the matrix. For example:

polarscatter([0 pi/4 pi/2],[4 5 6; 7 8 9])
If the matrix is square, polarscatter plots a separate set of points for each column in the matrix.

Alternatively, specify th and r as matrices of equal size. In this case, polarscatter plots each column of th against the corresponding column of r. For example:

polarscatter([0 pi/6 pi/2; pi/8 pi/4 pi],[1 2 3; 4 5 6])

To convert degrees to radians, use deg2rad.

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Rho values, specified as a scalar, vector, or matrix. The RData property of the scatter object stores the rho values.

The size and shape of r depends on the shape of your data. This table describes the most common situations.

Type of PlotHow to Specify Coordinates
Single point

Specify th and r as scalars. For example:

polarscatter(pi/2,0.5)

One set of points

Specify th and r as any combination of row or column vectors of the same length. For example:

polarscatter([0 pi/4 pi/2],[1; 2; 3])

Multiple sets of points that are different colors

If all the sets share the same theta or rho values, specify the shared coordinates as a vector and the other coordinates as a matrix. The length of the vector must match one of the dimensions of the matrix. For example:

polarscatter([0 pi/4 pi/2],[4 5 6; 7 8 9])
If the matrix is square, polarscatter plots a separate set of points for each column in the matrix.

Alternatively, specify th and r as matrices of equal size. In this case, polarscatter plots each column of th against the corresponding column of r. For example:

polarscatter([0 pi/6 pi/2; pi/8 pi/4 pi],[1 2 3; 4 5 6])

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Marker size, specified as a numeric scalar, vector, matrix, or empty array ([]). The size controls the area of each marker in points squared. An empty array specifies the default size of 36 points. The way you specify the size depends on how you specify th and r, and how you want the plot to look. This table describes the most common situations.

Desired Marker Sizesth and r szExample

Same size for all points

Any valid combination of vectors or matrices described for th and r.

Scalar

Specify th as a vector, r as a matrix, and sz as a scalar.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1 2; 2 4; 5 6];
polarscatter(th,r,100)

Different size for each point

Vectors of the same length

  • A vector with the same length as th and r.

  • A matrix with at least one dimension that matches the lengths of th and r. Specifying a matrix is useful for displaying multiple markers with different sizes at each (th,r) location.

Specify th, r, and sz as vectors.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1; 2; 3];
sz = [50 500 100];
polarscatter(th,r,sz)

Specify th and r as vectors and sz as a matrix.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1; 2; 3];
sz = [50 500 100; 300 1000 200];
polarscatter(th,r,sz)

Different size for each point

At least one of x or y is a matrix for plotting multiple data sets

  • A vector with the same number of elements as there are points in each data set.

  • A matrix that has the same size as the th or r matrix.

Specify th as a vector, r as a matrix, and sz as vector.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1 2; 2 4; 5 6];
sz = [50 500 1000];
polarscatter(th,r,sz)

Specify th as a vector, r as a matrix, and sz as a matrix the same size as r.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1 2; 2 4; 5 6];
sz = [50 500; 1000 2000; 100 300];
polarscatter(th,r,sz)

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64

Marker color, specified as a color name, RGB triplet, matrix of RGB triplets, or a vector of colormap indices.

  • Color name — A color name such as 'red', or a short name such as 'r'.

  • RGB triplet — A three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1]; for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7]. RGB triplets are useful for creating custom colors.

  • Matrix of RGB triplets — A three-column matrix in which each row is an RGB triplet.

  • Vector of colormap indices — A vector of numeric values that is the same length as the th and r vectors.

The way you specify the color depends on the desired color scheme and whether you are plotting one set of coordinates or multiple sets of coordinates. This table describes the most common situations.

Color SchemeHow to Specify the ColorExample

Use one color for all the points.

Specify a color name or a short name from the table below, or specify one RGB triplet.

Plot one set of points, and specify the color as 'red'.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1 2 3];
c = 'red';
polarscatter(th,r,[],c)

Plot two sets of points, and specify the color as red using an RGB triplet.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1 2; 2 4; 5 6];
c = [1 0 0];
polarscatter(th,r,[],c)

Assign different colors to each point using a colormap.

Specify a row or column vector of numbers. The numbers index into the current colormap array. The smallest value maps to the first row in the colormap, and the largest value maps to the last row. The intermediate values map linearly to the intermediate rows.

If your plot has three points, specify a column vector to ensure the values are interpreted as colormap indices.

You can use this method only when th, r, and sz are all vectors.

Create a vector c that specifies four colormap indices. Plot four points using the colors from the current colormap. Then, change the colormap to winter.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2 2*pi/3];
r = [1 2 3 4];
c = [1 2 3 4];
polarscatter(th,r,[],c)
colormap(gca,'winter')

Create a custom color for each point.

Specify an m-by-3 matrix of RGB triplets, where m is the number of points in the plot.

You can use this method only when th, r, and sz are all vectors.

Create a matrix c that specifies the RGB triplets of four colors. Then create plot four points using those colors.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2 2*pi/3];
r = [1 2 3 4];
c = [1 0 0; 0 1 0; 0 0 1; 0 0 0];
polarscatter(th,r,[],c)

Create a different color for each data set.

Specify an n-by-3 matrix of RGB triplets, where n is the number of data sets.

You can use this method only when at least one of th, r, or sz is a matrix.

Create a matrix c that contains two RGB triplets. Then plot two data sets using those colors.

th = [0 pi/6 pi/2];
r = [1 2; 2 4; 5 6];
c = [1 0 0; 0 0 1];
polarscatter(th,r,[],c)

Color Names and RGB Triplets for Common Colors

Color NameShort NameRGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
'red''r'[1 0 0]'#FF0000'

'green''g'[0 1 0]'#00FF00'

'blue''b'[0 0 1]'#0000FF'

'cyan' 'c'[0 1 1]'#00FFFF'

'magenta''m'[1 0 1]'#FF00FF'

'yellow''y'[1 1 0]'#FFFF00'

'black''k'[0 0 0]'#000000'

'white''w'[1 1 1]'#FFFFFF'

Here are the RGB triplets and hexadecimal color codes for the default colors MATLAB® uses in many types of plots.

RGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
[0 0.4470 0.7410]'#0072BD'

[0.8500 0.3250 0.0980]'#D95319'

[0.9290 0.6940 0.1250]'#EDB120'

[0.4940 0.1840 0.5560]'#7E2F8E'

[0.4660 0.6740 0.1880]'#77AC30'

[0.3010 0.7450 0.9330]'#4DBEEE'

[0.6350 0.0780 0.1840]'#A2142F'

Data Types: single | double | int8 | int16 | int32 | int64 | uint8 | uint16 | uint32 | uint64 | char | string

Marker symbol, specified as one of the marker symbols listed in this table.

MarkerDescription
'o'Circle
'+'Plus sign
'*'Asterisk
'.'Point
'x'Cross
'_'Horizontal line
'|'Vertical line
's'Square
'd'Diamond
'^'Upward-pointing triangle
'v'Downward-pointing triangle
'>'Right-pointing triangle
'<'Left-pointing triangle
'p'Pentagram
'h'Hexagram

The Marker property of the scatter object stores the marker symbol.

PolarAxes object. If you do not specify the polar axes, then polarscatter uses the current axes. polarscatter does not support plotting into Cartesian axes.

Name-Value Pair Arguments

Specify optional comma-separated pairs of Name,Value arguments. Name is the argument name and Value is the corresponding value. Name must appear inside quotes. You can specify several name and value pair arguments in any order as Name1,Value1,...,NameN,ValueN.

Example: polarscatter(th,r,'filled','MarkerFaceAlpha',.5) creates filled, semi-transparent markers.

The scatter object properties listed here are only a subset. For a complete list, see Scatter Properties.

Marker face transparency, specified as a scalar in the range [0,1]. A value of 1 is opaque and 0 is transparent. Values between 0 and 1 are semi-transparent.

Marker outline color, specified 'flat', an RGB triplet, a hexadecimal color code, a color name, or a short name. The default value of 'flat' uses colors from the CData property.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet or a hexadecimal color code.

  • An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1]; for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7].

  • A hexadecimal color code is a character vector or a string scalar that starts with a hash symbol (#) followed by three or six hexadecimal digits, which can range from 0 to F. The values are not case sensitive. Thus, the color codes '#FF8800', '#ff8800', '#F80', and '#f80' are equivalent.

Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the named color options, the equivalent RGB triplets, and hexadecimal color codes.

Color NameShort NameRGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
'red''r'[1 0 0]'#FF0000'

'green''g'[0 1 0]'#00FF00'

'blue''b'[0 0 1]'#0000FF'

'cyan' 'c'[0 1 1]'#00FFFF'

'magenta''m'[1 0 1]'#FF00FF'

'yellow''y'[1 1 0]'#FFFF00'

'black''k'[0 0 0]'#000000'

'white''w'[1 1 1]'#FFFFFF'

'none'Not applicableNot applicableNot applicableNo color

Here are the RGB triplets and hexadecimal color codes for the default colors MATLAB uses in many types of plots.

RGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
[0 0.4470 0.7410]'#0072BD'

[0.8500 0.3250 0.0980]'#D95319'

[0.9290 0.6940 0.1250]'#EDB120'

[0.4940 0.1840 0.5560]'#7E2F8E'

[0.4660 0.6740 0.1880]'#77AC30'

[0.3010 0.7450 0.9330]'#4DBEEE'

[0.6350 0.0780 0.1840]'#A2142F'

Example: [0.5 0.5 0.5]

Example: 'blue'

Example: '#D2F9A7'

Marker fill color, specified as 'flat', 'auto', an RGB triplet, a hexadecimal color code, a color name, or a short name. The 'flat' option uses the CData values. The 'auto' option uses the same color as the Color property for the axes.

For a custom color, specify an RGB triplet or a hexadecimal color code.

  • An RGB triplet is a three-element row vector whose elements specify the intensities of the red, green, and blue components of the color. The intensities must be in the range [0,1]; for example, [0.4 0.6 0.7].

  • A hexadecimal color code is a character vector or a string scalar that starts with a hash symbol (#) followed by three or six hexadecimal digits, which can range from 0 to F. The values are not case sensitive. Thus, the color codes '#FF8800', '#ff8800', '#F80', and '#f80' are equivalent.

Alternatively, you can specify some common colors by name. This table lists the named color options, the equivalent RGB triplets, and hexadecimal color codes.

Color NameShort NameRGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
'red''r'[1 0 0]'#FF0000'

'green''g'[0 1 0]'#00FF00'

'blue''b'[0 0 1]'#0000FF'

'cyan' 'c'[0 1 1]'#00FFFF'

'magenta''m'[1 0 1]'#FF00FF'

'yellow''y'[1 1 0]'#FFFF00'

'black''k'[0 0 0]'#000000'

'white''w'[1 1 1]'#FFFFFF'

'none'Not applicableNot applicableNot applicableNo color

Here are the RGB triplets and hexadecimal color codes for the default colors MATLAB uses in many types of plots.

RGB TripletHexadecimal Color CodeAppearance
[0 0.4470 0.7410]'#0072BD'

[0.8500 0.3250 0.0980]'#D95319'

[0.9290 0.6940 0.1250]'#EDB120'

[0.4940 0.1840 0.5560]'#7E2F8E'

[0.4660 0.6740 0.1880]'#77AC30'

[0.3010 0.7450 0.9330]'#4DBEEE'

[0.6350 0.0780 0.1840]'#A2142F'

Example: [0.3 0.2 0.1]

Example: 'green'

Example: '#D2F9A7'

Width of marker edge, specified as a positive value in point units.

Example: 0.75

Introduced in R2016b