The shadow component enables shadows for an entity and its children. Receiving shadows from surrounding objects and casting shadows onto other objects may (and often should) be enabled independently.

Without this component, an entity will not cast nor receive shadows.


The example below configures a tree model to cast shadows onto the surrounding scene but not receive shadows itself.

<a-entity light="type:directional; castShadow:true;" position="1 1 1"></a-entity>
<a-gltf-model src="tree.gltf" shadow="receive: false"></a-gltf-model>

IMPORTANT: Adding the shadow component alone is not enough to display shadows in your scene. We must have at least one light with castShadow: true enabled. Additionally, the light’s shadow camera (used for depth projection) usually must be configured correctly. Refer to the light component for more information.


Property Description Default Value
cast Whether the entity casts shadows onto the surrounding scene. true
receive Whether the entity receives shadows from the surrounding scene. true

Scene Properties

The shadow system exposes scene-level properties for configuring the renderer for shadows. These are set on <a-scene> (e.g., <a-scene shadow="autoUpdate: false">).

Property Description Default Value
autoUpdate Whether to dynamically update the shadow map every frame. Disable and manually update by setting renderer.shadowMap.needsUpdate = true for best performance. Calculating shadow maps is expensive. true
type Shadow type. One of pcf, basic, pcfsoft. pcf (percentage closer filtering)
renderReverseSided Whether to render the opposite side as specified by the material into the shadow map. true
renderSingleSided Whether to treat materials specified as double-sided as if they were specified as front-sided when rendering the shadow map. true