ArcGIS offers time-enabled layers that store information about the state of a dataset over periods of time. You can set time properties on your layers on the Time tab of the Layer Properties dialog box.
When you publish your map to ArcGIS Server, the time information in your time-enabled layers and map is preserved and accessible through the map service. You can use this information to change the display of your maps or perform temporal queries. In fact, ArcGIS Server map services are the only way that you can perform query operations on a time-enabled layer.