PLAXIS Licenses

PLAXIS 2D 2024.1 and PLAXIS 3D 2024.1 are offered in three flexible options to tailor to the different needs of any geotechnical engineer.


PLAXIS 2D and PLAXIS 3D offer all the essential functionality to perform everyday deformation and safety analysis for soil and rock, which does not require the consideration of consolidation analysis, groundwater or thermal flow analysis, creep, or other time-dependent effects.

PLAXIS 2D / 3D Advanced

PLAXIS 2D and 3D Advanced offer all the essential capabilities from the PLAXIS 2D and 3D tier extending it with geotechnical capabilities to deal with steady-state groundwater flow, consolidation analysis, creep, pseudostatic analysis, and degradation of soil due to cyclic loading.
Only for PLAXIS 2D, it includes steady-state thermal flow as well.

PLAXIS 2D / 3D Ultimate

PLAXIS 2D and 3D Ultimate offer everything from PLAXIS 2D and 3D Advanced and extend that with functionality to deal with the most challenging geotechnical projects. It includes features to analyze the effects of vibrations in the soil, like earthquake and traffic loads, or time-dependent variation to water levels, model & soil boundaries to simulate complex hydrological conditions.
For PLAXIS 2D Ultimate functionality is available to analyze the effects of time-dependent heat flow on the hydraulic and the mechanical behavior of soils and structures.

PLAXIS 2D WorkSuite

PLAXIS 2D WorkSuite provides you with the full complement of 2D geotechnical analysis products: PLAXIS 2D Ultimate and PLAXIS 2D LE.

PLAXIS 3D WorkSuite

PLAXIS 3D WorkSuite provides you with the full complement of 3D geotechnical analysis products: PLAXIS 3D Ultimate, PLAXIS 3D LE, and PLAXIS Designer.

Geotechnical SELECT Entitlements

With a SELECT subscription on PLAXIS products, users gain access to many specific and extended features in the PLAXIS program as part of Geotechnical SELECT Entitlements [GSE]. Functionality part of the Geotechnical SELECT Entitlements is mainly focused on interoperability with other Seequent and Bentley Systems software (CAD import, Leapfrog and Central import), scripting and satellite tools based on scripting (for example Sensitivity Analysis).

For a full overview of all the Geotechnical SELECT Entitlement from V21 and onwards, please visit Overview of Geotechnical SELECT Entitlement features.

Are you using PLAXIS 2D/3D CONNECT Edition V20 and want to upgrade to PLAXIS 2D/3D 2023.1?

Please see this article on how the license upgrade is handled. how the licenses transition and what you can do:
PLAXIS CONNECT Edition V21/V22 licensing changes

Overview of functionality

In the tables below, you can find an overview of the features offered in the different Tiers, e.g.:

Constitutive Soil ModelsPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Linear elasticXXX
Hardening SoilXXX
Hardening Soil Small Strain StiffnessXXX
Modified Cam-ClayXXX
Soft Soil XX
Soft Soil Creep XX
Sekiguchi Ohta (Viscid) XX
Sekiguchi Ohta (Inviscid) XX
Jointed Rock modelXXX
Hoek-Brown, with Parameter guideXXX
UDCAM-S and Cyclic Accumulation tool XX
UBC3D-PLM (Liquefaction)  X
Concrete XX
User Defined Soil Models X1X1
Creep-SCLAY1S X1X1
Barcelona Basic: unsaturated soil X1X1
Fluid X1X1
Frozen and Unfrozen Soil2  X1
Generalized Hardening Soil X1X1
Hoek-Brown with softening (Strength softening and GSI softening models) X1X1
Hypoplastic model with inter-granular strain X1X1
Isostropic Jointed Rock with Mohr-Coulomb failure criterion X1X1
Masonry X1X1
N2PC-MCT Rock creep (Norton-based Double Power Creep with MC and Tension cut-off failure surface) X1X1
NorSand X1X1
OverConsolidated Clay (OC-Clay) X1X1
PM4Sand2  X1
PM4Silt2  X1
SHANSEP Mohr-Coulomb X1X1
Swelling rock2 X1X1
Visco-elastic perfectly plastic X1X1
Soil material drainage types
Undrained AXXX
Undrained BXXX
Undrained CXXX
Groundwater flow material properties
Groundwater propertiesXXX
Soil classification systems (Hypres, USDA etc)XXX
Predefined data sets for Approximate Van Genuchten models (soil)XXX
Thermal flow material properties2
Thermal properties for soil XX
Thermal properties for structural elements (excl. embedded beam) XX
Dynamics material properties
Rayleigh damping for soil  X
Rayleigh damping for structural elements  X
1 Requires GSE
2 PLAXIS 2D only
3 PLAXIS 3D only

Structural element material typesPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Mohr-Coulomb for DiscontinuitiesXXX
Plates: Elastic, ElastoplasticXXX
Geogrids: Elastic, Elastoplastic & Visco-elasticXXX
Embedded beams: Elastic, ElastoplasticXXX
Cables: Elastic, Elastoplastic2XXX
Fixed-end anchors: Elastic, Elastoplastic (with residual strength)XXX
Node-to-node Anchors: Elastic, Elastoplastic (with residual strength)XXX
2 PLAXIS 2D only

Calculation typesPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Initial stress generation
K0 procedureXXX
Gravity loadingXXX
Field stressXXX
Flow only  X
Deformation calculation types
Safety analysisXXX
Consolidation XX
Dynamics  X
Dynamics with consolidation  X
Fully coupled flow-deformation  X
Pore pressure calculation
Phreatic levelXXX
Use pore pressures from previous phaseXXX
Steady state groundwater flow XX
Transient groundwater flow  X
Thermal calculation types2
Ignore temperature XX
Earth gradient XX
Use temperatures from previous phase XX
Steady state thermal flow XX
Transient thermal flow  X
2 PLAXIS 2D only

Project and model propertiesPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Selection of imperial and SI units for length, force etc.XXX
Plane strain and axi-symmetric models2XXX
6-noded and 15-noded 2D element types2XXX
10-noded 3D tetrahedral element types3XXX
Constants tab in Project properties2 XX
2 PLAXIS 2D only
3 PLAXIS 3D only

Geometry creationPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Create Borehole toolXXX
Select, Move, Rotate and Array toolsXXX
Create Soil polygon, Soil rectangle toolsXXX
Create NURBS Curve and NURBS surface tools3XXX
Create Polycurve designer tool2XXX
Combine polygon tool3XXX
Intersect, Combine, Extrude, Revolve around Axis tools3XXX
Loft Polycurve and Blend Surfaces tools3XXX
Create Point, Line and Surface3 load toolsXXX
Create Point, Line and Surface3 prescribed displacement toolsXXX
Create Interface toolXXX
Create Discontinuity toolXXX
Create Plate, Geogrid toolsXXX
Create Fixed-end anchor, Node-to-node anchor toolsXXX
Create Embedded beam toolXXX
Create Cables toolXXX
Create Line contraction tool2XXX
Create Surface contraction tool3XXX
Create Well and Drain tools XX
Create Groundwater flow boundary conditions tools XX
Create Thermal flow boundary condition tool2 XX
Create Added mass tool  X
Create Moving point load and Moving line load tools3  X
Tunnel DesignerX1X1X1
Reinforcement (Rockbolts) definitionX1X1X1
Reinforcement (Cables) definitionNEWX1X1X1
Reinforcement (Umbrella arches) definition3X1X1X1
Girder/beam definition3X1X1X1
Definition of excavation sequence3X1X1X1
Tunnel splitting tool3X1X1X1
Automatic Generation of staged construction phases for tunnels3X1X1X1
1 Requires GSE
2 PLAXIS 2D only
3 PLAXIS 3D only

Time-dependent functionsPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Time-dependent waterlevels  X
Time-dependent groundwater flow boundary conditions  X
Definition of flow functions for head and discharge changes  X
Dynamic components in x, y, or z3 direction for loads  X
Dynamic components in x, y, or z3 direction for displacements  X
Definition of Dynamic multipliers to create vibration signals  X
Definition of movement functions for velocity changes in time3  X
Earthquake signals
Definition of Dynamic multipliers to create earthquake signals  X
Scaling tools for earthquake signals  X
Fourier spectra, response spectra, Arias intensity plots  X
Drift correction for earthquake signals  X
3 PLAXIS 3D only

Dynamics boundary conditionsPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Viscous boundaries  X
Tied degrees of freedom2  X
Free field boundaries  X
Compliant base boundary  X
All nodes fixity  X
2 PLAXIS 2D only

Postprocessing & resultsPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Various ways to display forces, displacements, stresses and strains
  in contour, vector, and iso-surface plots
Tables of results with copy, sorting and filter optionsXXX
Load-Displacement curvesXXX
Curve manager to plot graphs of various resultsXXX
Cross-section tools and cross-section curvesXXX
Automatic and manual centerline extraction
  for structural forces plots of volume plates2
Automatic and manual centerline extraction
  for structural forces plots of volume piles3
Resulting forces view2XXX
Plot annotations2XXX
Report generatorXXX
Printing and saving plots & curvesXXX
Plots and Curves of accelerations and velocities for Dynamics phases  X
Structural forces envelopes for Dynamic phases  X
Curve plots of Pseudo Spectral Acceleration (PSA)  X
PSA: Switch between time and frequency represenatons  X
Plots and curves of pore pressures
  for phreatic level calculations
Plots and curves of pore pressures, saturation, suction, and Darcy flux
  for steady state groundwater flow calculations
Plots and curves of pore pressures, saturation, suction, and Darcy flux
  for transient groundwater flow
Plots and curves of pore pressures, saturation, suction, and Darcy flux
  for fully coupled flow deformation calculations
Plots and curves of temperature, ice saturation and heat flux
  for steady state thermal flow calculations2
Plots and curves of temperature, ice saturation and heat flux
  for transient thermal flow2
Plots and curves of temperature, ice saturation and heat flux
  for full thermo-hydro-mechanical coupled calculations2
Export of results to ParaviewTPX1X1X1
1 Requires GSE
2 PLAXIS 2D only
3 PLAXIS 3D only

Other features, tools and interoperabilityPLAXIS 2D/3DPLAXIS 2D/3D AdvancedPLAXIS 2D/3D Ultimate
Spatial variation of preconsolidation2XXX
Tunnel deconfinement2XXX
Create cluster field stressXXX
Staged constructionXXX
Automatic regeneration of construction stagesXXX
Design approaches2 XX
Pseudostatic analysis XX
1D Site response analysis tool2  X1
Generate Stratigraphy from imported CPT LogsX1X1X1
SoilTest and parameter optimization toolX1X1X1
Sensitivity analysis and Parameter variation2X1X1X1
Multicore and parallel calculation XX
Calculation managerX1X1X1
PLAXIS 2D LE model import2TPX1X1X1
GeoStudio 2D model import2TPX1X1X1
Export to GeoStudio 2D model2TPX1X1X1
PLAXIS 2D to PLAXIS 3D converterX1X1X1
Soil structure interaction with structural packages through super element3TPX1X1X1
SACS-PLAXIS Sucket Bucket Analysis tool3TPX1X1X1
Command line input (Input, Output & SoilTest)XXX
Command line autocomplete (Input, Output & SoilTest)X1X1X1
Commands runner (Input, Output & SoilTest)X1X1X1
Macro library and running macros (Input, Output & SoilTest)X1X1X1
Remote scripting for Input, Output & SoilTestX1X1X1
Scripting referenceX1X1X1
Cloud Services and Connected Workflow
Seequent Central: read cross sections and material info2NEWX1X1X1
Seequent Central: import of surfaces3TPX1X1X1
Projectwise integration: loading from ProjectWise serverX1X1X1
Projectwise integration: saving to ProjectWise serverX1X1X1
Bentley Cloud Services: personal & project portalX1X1X1
Bentley Cloud Services: project associationX1X1X1
CAD import and export
CAD import and export of common formatsX1X1X1
CAD import: closed polycurves as polygons2X1X1X1
CAD: IFC Import of parametric geometric objects3X1X1X1
IFC supported types:
IfcBeam, IfcColumn, IfcFooting, IfcPile, IfcPlate, IfcRoof, IfcSlab IfcWall
CAD: import point clouds3X1X1X1
CAD: import parametric and triangulated surfaces3X1X1X1
parametric geometry: .BREP, .DXF, .STEP, .STP
triangulated surfaces: .OBJ, *.STL
CAD: import Water levelsX1X1X1
CAD: import Borehole top and bottom surface3X1X1X1
1 Requires GSE
2 PLAXIS 2D only
3 PLAXIS 3D only