Speedstack library filter commands explained
Application Note AP550 

Using Filtering in Speedstack materials libraries

The materials libraries allow designers to manage their own libraries of board materials. Libraries may be created and materials added. Up to date libraries of materials may be downloaded from the Polar Online Material Library

   Click the Materials Library button to display the Materials Library window.

   Click the Online Library button to display the Online Library contents.

Filtering Materials

When adding or swapping materials, available materials (Foils, Prepregs, etc.) are listed in the associated material library dialog. Lists can be filtered for materials matching desired parameters (dielectric thickness, Er, etc.) In the library window click the Set Filter to display the Set Filter String dialog.

   Filter strings can be created and saved for future use, to save click Save Filter
   To recall an existing filter click the Load Filter button, choose the filter (.mlf) file and click OK.

Speedstack Material Library includes the ability to apply filtering to any column within the library. All columns are available for filtering whether they have been selected to be viewed or not. The following will summarise some of these Filter commands and syntax to enable the operator to familiarise themselves with the filtering.

A filter, once created, can be saved so that it can be re-loaded in quickly rather than having to recreate it at a later date.

   Use this icon to create a filter
   Use this icon to clear the current filter

When creating a filter the available fields will depend on which Library tab is currently selected (e.g. Foils, Prepregs RCC’s etc) and all columns will be available for filtering even if some are selected to not be displayed.

To simplify the filtering a click and select method of building the query is used. Fields, Operand, Criteria and Logic are selected to build a Filter command which, when executed, will be applied against the current selected material tab.

Building a Filter

Open the material library viewer and import any libraries you wish to work on.

   Select the appropriate tab you wish to filter and click to add a filter.

The following example will be based on the ISOLA 370HR 1GHz library

Exact Match Filter Example

Click the Field dropdown and note the field list closely matches the columns displayed within the data tab. Note that the columns are listed as per the field order within the library and does not reflect any customisation made to hide fields or re-order them. Select the Field you wish to apply filtering for, here we have selected Description.

Under Operand and Criteria select the appropriate matching criteria, here we have selected = and 1080.

If this is a single line query then you may click OK to execute it. You will be asked if you wish to Save the Filter for future use. Select Yes, No or Cancel to return back to the Filter Editor.

Selecting NO will execute the query on the current selected data tab, but if you wish to edit or re-run the query you will need to re-enter it. Therefore it is always a good idea to select Yes to save the query.

In the graphic below, only Prepregs where the Description = 1080 have been selected.

This query is an exact match and excludes any items where the Description may have additional text or numbers before or after the Criteria query.

   Click to clear the filter and display all items.

Inexact Match Filter Example

To execute a query to select items where an exact match is not necessary then the query needs to be amended as follows.

As above open the Filter and select the appropriate Field option.

Under Operand select the Like option – this enables the Filter query to search for a specified pattern of characters as opposed to an exact match.

There are two wildcard characters that can be used in conjunction with the LIKE operator:

• The Asterix (*) or the Percent Sign (%) represents zero, one, or multiple characters

The wildcard characters can be used in any location and multiple times within the field to perform a inexact match search.

The above search (Supplier Description Like *1080*) will find any rows where the Supplier Description contains the characters “1080” located anywhere within the field.

The same search but using only the first * (i.e. Supplier Description Like *1080) this will find any rows where the Supplier Description ends in 1080.

Likewise if we use only the last * (Supplier Description Like 1080*) this will find any rows where the Supplier Description starts with 1080.

Results of running the Filter – the Supplier Description is limited to any entry that contains 1080 located anywhere within the Description.


So far we have only executed a single query in our searches, however the Filter Editor allows us to concatenate more than one query which enables complex queries to be built up.

The process for this is exactly the same as the above, however after the first query line has been entered by the use of the Logic selector we can create a Filter made of several queries resulting in a more complex search.

The following example will search for a Prepreg where the Dielectric Base Thickness is between 50 and 150.

Note that after entering the Logic Operator = AND the current search line moves down to the display box and the Field, Operand, Criteria and Logic fields are cleared so another row of search criteria can be entered.

We have also used the Operand operators of >= and <= to limit our search and the list of Operands is detailed below.

= Is equal to (exact match)

<= Is equal to or less than

>= Is equal to or greater than

<> Is not equal to

> Is greater than

< Is less than

Like Allows the use of wildcard characters within the search Criteria

The Logic operator AND and OR perform two different concatenations on the separate lines within the query.

AND Will find a match if the two lines joined are BOTH true

OR Will find a match if EITHER of the two lines joined are true

Here is how the above search looks in the editor:-