Explore capabilities

Use 3D effect, daylight, and underground mode capabilities in ArcGIS Earth to explore more possibilities of your data.

3D effects

Click the 3D effects button 3D effects to open the 3D effects panel, through which you can configure 3D graphics rendering, including atmosphere and elevation exaggeration.

  • Atmosphere—Turn photorealistic atmosphere effect on or off.
  • Elevation Exaggeration—Turn terrain on or off on the Basemap and Terrain dialog box. Drag the slider to view the elevation exaggeration scale between 0 and 100. You can also type a specific number in the text box. The default setting for this value is 1.
    The maximum value of elevation exaggeration can be customized to 1,000 by the administrator configuration in ArcGIS Earth configuration file. Refer to elevationExaggerationMax in the administrator configuration for more details.

Underground mode

Click the Underground mode button to open the panel, through which you can enable underground data navigation and configure transparency of the ground.

  • Underground Navigation—Turn on the mode to navigate data under the ground. Turn off the mode to browse data on the ground only.
  • Ground Transparency—Drag the slider bar to adjust transparency of the ground.

  • There may be gaps on the basemap after enabling underground mode.
  • With the Atmosphere effect on, changing ground transparency may cause a rendering issue.
  • As a known limitation, camera control may be sensitive while navigating data under the ground.
  • Another known limitation is that the point data may be attached to the ground under certain circumstances.


Open the Daylight panel and turn on the daylight effect to change how sunlight and shadows affect your scene during different times of the day and year. You can configure the sunlight and shadows effect, including time, date, animation methods, and show shadow.

  1. Turn on the daylight effect of your scene using the toggle button.
  2. Click the current time zone and choose from the drop-down list to change the time zone.
  3. Drag the time slider left or right to adjust the time in your scene.
  4. Click the Calendar drop-down menu to change the sun's position at different times of the year.
  5. Check the Animate sunlight and shadows over a year option to animate the daylight as it cycles through the months in a year. Check the Animate sunlight and shadows over a day option to animate as it cycles through the hours in a day.
  6. Check Show shadows to illustrate shadows in your scene. You can change shadow effects by adjusting the date, time zone, and calendar options.
  7. Click Start Animation to play the daylight animation.

    A clock synchronized with the scene automatically appears in the upper right corner. When hovering over the clock, you can pause the animation or go back to the settings panel.


  • When adding a scene to bookmark, the current status of the scene is also captured, including daylight animation.
  • If you start to play a bookmark while playing the daylight animation, the daylight animation stops and applies the daylight setting from bookmarks.
  • If you start a daylight animation while playing the bookmarks, the bookmarks' playback automatically stops and begins to play the daylight animation according to the setting.
  • The default time zone uses the local time zone from the OS.
  • As a known limitation, terrain shadow is not supported in ArcGIS Earth.