I am trying to use IEEETrans to write a scientific paper in two column format. The issue is that one is not allowed to place figures in the left-hand side column of the first page. Figures should start on the top of the right-hand side column of the first page or alternatively, on the second page (any column). Is there any way to restrict the placement of floats to avoid using the left-hand side column of the first page?
You can specify no top or bottom floats in the column. (The class ought to do this in its maketitle definition)
This is the easiest way I know: Declare your figure far from first column.
Figures are floating objects and you make reference to them with labels, so it's not necessary to be placed where you are declaring the reference but where you think (more or less) they should be placed.
Next code with figure declared near its reference, places the figure on top of left column:
while, next one declares the figure a little bit later although its reference remains at the first line. This way the figure is placed on right column.