5.2. Stepcontour

The stepcontour task produces 1D and contour plots of step searches produced using the step commands. At the end of the step command definitions (see Step: Grid search for spectral fits), add the text file and a file name to the step command to write out the step results to a .stp file.

For example:

SPEX> step dimension 2
SPEX> step axis 1 parameter 1 1 norm range 0.5:1.5 n 10
SPEX> step axis 2 parameter 1 1 t range 0.75:1.25 n 10
SPEX> step file norm-kt

These commands will produce a norm-kt.stp file. Subsequently, the stepcontour command can be run from the command line or the SPEX> prompt:

linux:~> stepcontour


SPEX> sys exe "stepcontour"

The program will start and ask the user for the name of the .stp file:

Program stepcontour version 1.0.
Use this program to plot contours from SPEX steppar (.stp) files.

Enter filename of SPEX steppar file (.stp): norm-kt.stp

Then provide a PGPLOT device to show the plot. For example ’/xw’ for X output or ’file.ps/ps’ for Postscript plots:

Number of axes in your steppar file:            2
Graphics device/type (? to see list, default /NULL): /xw
PGPLOT device type: XWINDOW
Plotting contours for: 68.3%, 90%, 95.4%, 99%, 99.99%.

If you would like to write the plot data to QDP format, say yes to the following question:

Would you like to write this plot to a QDP file (y/n)? y

The program asks for an output QDP filename and writes the data to that file.


The stepcontour program does not support logarithmic axes on 2D plots. Use another program to plot these or perform the step command on a linear grid.