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If I just try to set the figure's size to 0.9\textwidth my figure will just end up on the right column, sized to be two-columns wide.

Has anyone done this before?

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I think we need a minimal example of what you are doing. There are lots of possible variations here. Did you try \begin{figure*}, for example? –  Joseph Wright Sep 16 '10 at 21:05
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That's exactly what I was looking for, thanks. I thought adding an * only removed the figure's numbering? –  levesque Sep 16 '10 at 21:07
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You're confused with equation* –  Will Robertson Sep 16 '10 at 22:51
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figure* and table* are two column figures and tables, respectively. –  TH. Sep 16 '10 at 23:52
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I had a similar problem, in \documentclass[twocolumn]{article}--but using figure*[width=\textwidth] sends it to the bottom of the document, not breaking the columns. –  isomorphismes Jun 3 at 9:17

1 Answer 1

up vote 32 down vote accepted

From the TUG faq: use the starred versions figure* and table*. Unfortunately, they're somewhat limited in positioning.

Also, the same solution applies to equations. Just include them in a figure* environment. But I don't recommend doing this: it will look ugly and confusing. For an example, see this paper. (sorry, I couldn't find an example in arXiv)

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How are they limited in positioning? You don't want to put a full-width figure midway down the page, right? –  Will Robertson Sep 17 '10 at 2:26
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@Will, true, but you can't put them at the bottom of a page, either, which you may reasonably want to do. tex.ac.uk/cgi-bin/texfaq2html?label=2colfloat –  Lev Bishop Sep 17 '10 at 3:34
    
Me? No! But someone might conceivably need to, and I think it's a little dangerous to actually make it impossible to do so. –  Mateus Araújo Sep 17 '10 at 5:25
    
@Lev: Oh, I didn't remember that double-width floats can't appear at [b]! @araujorns: I know of some journals that can make full-width equations across double cols, effectively splitting the page in four; seems like cuted and midfloat can do this. I wouldn't use it for figures, however. –  Will Robertson Sep 17 '10 at 6:43

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