What's new in ArcGIS 3D Analyst 10
What's new in ArcGIS 3D Analyst 10

The ArcGIS 3D Analyst extension provides tools for creating, visualizing, and analyzing GIS data in a three-dimensional (3D) context. ArcGIS 3D Analyst 10 brings significant improvements in 3D display performance, 3D data management, and 3D vector analysis.

Display performance enhancements

High-quality 3D data visualization and fast rendering speed are essential when it comes to interactive 3D GIS software. The quality of the user experience depends on fast, interactive 3D display of GIS and CAD data.

To enhance the 3D visualization user experience, the release of ArcGIS 3D Analyst 10 offers the following:

  • Faster rendering of 2D map caches in ArcGlobe, reducing the need to create both 2D and 3D caches for sharing content.
  • Improved display performance of 3D text through built-in conflict detection to ensure overlapping text is not displayed.

    Learn more about displaying annotation features in ArcGlobe

  • Improved display performance of textured multipatches through automatic texture management.
  • Improved display performance of 3D vectors, using OpenGL stencil buffers for surface-hugging vectors.

    Learn more about digitizing 3D line graphics in ArcGlobe

  • Improved memory allocation settings stored within ArcGlobe documents. This changes the persistence of the .3dd file and allows you to configure each 3D map differently so it will consume the right amount of memory for the layers within it.

Learn more about working with ArcGlobe and ArcScene

Creating and managing 3D data enhancements

The standard editing environment is now available inside both ArcGlobe and ArcScene, enabling the creation and maintenance of z-aware GIS features. Editing in 3D offers the following:

  • Start editing, stop editing, save edits, use undo and redo functions, and do other standard edit management tasks in 3D. The classic snapping environment is also supported, as are precision-creation options such as parallel, perpendicular, duplicate vertical, and absolute XYZ.
  • Create and delete individual features. This includes the creation and storage of vertical lines in the geodatabase and shapefiles.
  • Move, rotate, scale, and replace feature geometry (higher-level geometry edits to features). This includes the ability to place 3D models (for example, COLLADA files) directly into the 3D view as new multipatch features, then move/scale/rotate them on the landscape.

There are also additional tools for creating and maintaining terrain datasets (particularly when working with lidar data sources) and editing TIN datasets using the TIN editing toolbar in ArcMap.

Analysis enhancements

High-quality 3D data visualization is mainstream now thanks to Google Earth and Bing Maps (Virtual Earth). Users expect to see geospatial data in 3D. However 3D GIS users are now beginning to move beyond just visualization. A major focus of ArcGIS 3D Analyst 10 is on analysis of 3D vector features.

New functionality includes the following:

3D Analyst Geoprocessing enhancements

New geoprocessing tools in the 3D Features toolset

Geoprocessing tool

Description

Add Z Information

Examines each 3D shape and adds selected properties as attributes to the input feature class. The output options vary based on the input shape type.

Construct Sight Lines

Constructs lines between each of the observer points and each of the target features.

Feature To 3D By Attribute

Adds a height dimension based on one or two attributes. The height (z-value) of the shape of each feature in the input feature class is set to the value found in the user-specified height field in that feature class.

Difference 3D

Computes the geometric intersection of two volumes defined by closed multipatch features, based upon the geometric intersection of their patches. Subtracts all the volumes of one feature class from the other and writes the result to a new output feature class.

Inside 3D

Tests each feature to determine if it falls inside a multipatch. If it falls inside a multipatch feature, it writes an entry to a new table indicating which feature it fell within.

Intersect 3D

Computes the geometric intersection of two volumes defined by closed multipatch features, based upon the geometric intersection of their patches. Features or portions of features which overlap in the two layers and/or feature classes will be written to the Output Feature Class.

Intersect 3D Line With Multipatch

Computes a geometric intersection of the input line and multipatch features, and returns the number of points of intersection. Points (of intersection) and/or lines (resulting from input lines being broken at intersection points) can optionally be written to output feature class(es).

Is Closed

Tests each multipatch to see if it completely encloses a volume. Then adds a new field with a flag for each multipatch feature in the input layer or feature class indicating if that feature is closed or not.

Near 3D

Determines the distance from each feature in the input features to the nearest features in the near features, within the search radius.

Skyline

Generates a line or multipatch feature class containing the results from a skyline silhouette analysis. The analysis is conducted from observer points above a functional or virtual surface and will also consider features that are encountered during the analysis. When used in conjunction with other tools, especially the Skyline Barrier tool, shadow volumes and other such features can be created.

Skyline Barrier

Generates a multipatch feature class representing a skyline barrier or shadow volume. The barrier is in a sense a surface, and looks similar to a triangle fan formed by drawing a line from the observer point to the first vertex of the skyline, then sweeping the line through all of the vertices of the skyline. A skirt and base can optionally be added to form a closed multipatch, giving the appearance of a solid. It is possible to create this closed multipatch so that it can serve as a shadow volume. If the input is a silhouette (a multipatch feature class) rather than a skyline (a polyline feature class), then the multipatch is extruded into a shadow volume.

Skyline Graph

Calculates sky visibility, and optionally generates a table and a polar graph. The table and graph represent the horizontal and vertical angles going from the observer point to each of the vertices on the skyline.

Union 3D

Computes the geometric intersection of the patches of overlapping multipatches, then aggregates the multipatches together. How many features are created as output depends on the tool's settings.

New geoprocessing tools in the 3D Features toolset

New geoprocessing tools in the Conversion toolset

Geoprocessing tool

Description

LandXML To TIN

This tool imports one or more triangulated irregular network (TIN) surfaces from a LandXML file and writes the TIN(s) to location on disk.

Raster To Multipoint

This tool converts a raster into a new multipoint feature class.

Terrain To Points

This tool converts a terrain dataset into a new point or multipoint feature class.

New geoprocessing tools in the Conversion toolset

New geoprocessing tools in the Functional Surface toolset

Geoprocessing tool

Description

Add Surface Information

Add Surface Information uses a surface to interpolate heights for features, converting them to 3D in the background, calculates 3D properties for these features, then writes the property values as attributes to the input feature class. The output z information options vary depending on shape type of the input feature class.

New geoprocessing tools in the Functional Surface toolset

New geoprocessing tools in the Terrain and TIN Surface toolset

Geoprocessing tool

Description

Locate Outliers

Locates points which appear to be anomalies when compared to a surface. These points represent points that may be blunders and may need to be eliminated from the creation of the surface.

Surface Aspect

This tool extracts aspect information from an input TIN or terrain dataset into an output feature class. It produces a polygon feature class whose polygons are categorized by the input surface triangle aspect values.

Surface Contour

Creates a feature class containing a set of contours generated from a terrain dataset or TIN surface. The output feature class is 2D and contains an attribute with contour values.

Surface Difference

This tool calculates the volumetric difference between two triangulated irregular networks (TIN), or terrain datasets.

Surface Slope

Extracts slope information from an input TIN or terrain dataset into an output feature class.

New geoprocessing tools in the Terrain and TIN Surface toolset

New geoprocessing tools in the Terrain Management toolset

Geoprocessing tool

Description

Append Terrain Points

Adds points or multipoints to a terrain dataset.

Change Terrain Resolution Bounds

Changes the pyramid level resolution bounds for a given feature class contributing to the surface of the terrain dataset.

Delete Terrain Points

Deletes points from a terrain dataset within an area of interest from one or more feature classes.

Replace Terrain Points

Adds points and multipoints to the collection of data used by the terrain dataset, replacing data that had previously been used.

New geoprocessing tools in the Terrain Management toolset

New geoprocessing tools in the TIN Management toolset

Geoprocessing tool

Description

Copy TIN

This tool copies a triangulated irregular network (TIN) in a specified version to another location.

New geoprocessing tools in the TIN Management toolset

Enhanced 3D Analyst geoprocessing tools

Conversion toolset

  • The Point File Information tool has a new summarize by class code option when generating a new output feature class containing statistical information about one or more point files.
  • The LAS to Multipoint tool has added support for LAS version 1.2 file format.

Functional Surface toolset

  • The Line Of Sight tool has included support for multipatches when conducting a line-of-sight analysis.
  • The Interpolate Shape tool has new conflation options when conducting analysis.

Terrain and TIN Surface toolset

  • The Interpolate Polygon To Multipatch tool now supports terrain datasets.
  • The Polygon Volume tool now supports terrain datasets.
  • The Extrude Between tool now supports points in addition to lines and polygons.

Deprecated 3D Analyst geoprocessing tools

The following tools have been deprecated, and their functionality has been added to new tools as indicated here:

Terrain dataset and TIN enhancements

Terrain dataset

In ArcGIS 3D Analyst 10, you can more easily interact with, manage, and visualize your terrain datasets. The major changes include the following:

  • A tighter integration with lidar source points and their attributes. For example, the added ability to display and analyze lidar points as attributes, or using the Point To Raster geoprocessing tool to generate an intensity image.
  • Additional tools for finding and eliminating data errors. For example, Locate Outliers will determine which lidar points may be anomalies in the data so that they can be removed from the terrain surface.
  • The ability to run analytic operators directly on terrain datasets. These operators include both new and improved geoprocessing tools specific to surface analysis, such as Surface Difference, Surface Contour, and Line Of Sight tools.
  • Added support to import layer symbology for terrain datasets.
  • Improved display options for terrain datasets including new contour and point symbology renderers such as Contour with the same symbol, Terrain point attribute grouped with unique symbol, Terrain point attribute with graduated color ramp, and Terrain point elevation with graduated color ramp.
  • New profile options for terrain points: If your terrain is symbolized with points, you can conduct a profile graph analysis from the symbolized nodes of the terrain dataset surface.
  • Added support to reset elevation range classes based on current display extent: Now when you zoom to an area of interest of the same elevation range class of your legend, you can redefine the class breaks using the context menu so that you get the full range of colors for that area.
  • Added support for anchor points: These are critical points such as control points or navigation hazards, and they will not be thinned from higher pyramid levels.
  • Terrain overviews have been optimized to allow large terrain datasets to be opened and viewed more quickly.

TIN dataset

New and improved functionality for TIN datasets at ArcGIS 10 includes the following:

  • Additional support for: constrained Delaunay triangulations, ArcGIS spatial reference, edge tag persistence, and node source persistence.
  • Added support to import layer symbology for TIN surfaces.
  • Improved display options for TIN surfaces including a new TIN contour renderer called Contour with the same symbol.
  • Added support to reset elevation range classes based on current display extent. As with terrains, when zooming to a TIN area of interest of the same elevation range class of your legend, you can redefine the class breaks using the context menu so that you get the full range of colors for that area.

Other 3D Analyst enhancements

  • Point feature symbology by size and full 3D rotation can be driven directly by feature attributes.
  • Ability to create graphs in ArcGlobe and ArcScene.
  • Video layers: Prior to ArcGIS 3D Analyst 10, the video layer type did not exist. Now you can successfully drape georeferenced, full-motion video layers on the surface of ArcGlobe. The video is not shown in a separate window but actually draped on the surface.
  • Animation: The exporting experience has been expanded to allow users to export sequential frames to a folder, which can be converted into a single video file as a second process (engine service). See What's New in Animation at 10.
  • Added support to visualize temporal data using a simple time slider so you can see patterns or trends emerge over time. Layers with supported time data can be time enabled using the Layer Properties dialog box.

    Learn more about What's new with Time in ArcGIS at 10

  • The navigation model has been redesigned, which simplifies the experience navigating around the 3D view.
  • Styles: 3D styles have been updated to have better names and description tags, which leads to significantly improved results when using Search from the Symbol Selection dialog box.
  • Improved user experience for setting the two most common 3D properties, Base Heights and Extrusion. It is now easier to complete these settings with built-in graphics that demonstrate the effect of the property change being made.
  • Extensive documentation on the best ways to author and interact with 3D views of GIS data. This includes best practices and recommended workflows for creating a 3D virtual city from 2D and 3D data, importing data from a variety of 2D and 3D sources, editing 3D data, publishing 3D data, and consuming data such as non-ESRI formats like BIM/IFC sources (using the Data Interoperability extension).
  • The 3D Analyst toolbar commands were incompatible in geoprocessing workflows and were made obsolete with the introduction of the geoprocessing framework. The full set of functionality, and more, is available in the 3D Analyst geoprocessing toolbox. Also, you can customize the 3D Analyst toolbar by dragging and dropping geoprocessing tools of choice onto it using the Customize dialog box.

Source: http://help.arcgis.com