GPlates is a plate tectonics program. Manipulate reconstructions of geological and paleogeographic features through geological time. Interactively visualize vector, raster and volume data. PyGPlates is the GPlates Python library. Get fine-grained access to GPlates functionality in your Python scripts.

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What is GPlates?

GPlates is desktop software for the interactive visualisation of plate tectonics.

GPlates offers a novel combination of interactive plate tectonic reconstructions, geographic information system (GIS) functionality and raster data visualisation. GPlates enables both the visualisation and the manipulation of plate tectonic reconstructions and associated data through geological time. GPlates runs on Windows, Linux and macOS. GPlates has an online user manual.

GPlates and pyGPlates are both free software (also known as open-source software), licensed for distribution under the GNU General Public License (GPL), version 2.

GPlately is a Python package which enables the reconstruction of data through deep geological time (points, lines, polygons, and rasters), the interrogation of plate kinematic information (plate velocities, rates of subduction and seafloor spreading), the rapid comparison between multiple plate motion models, and the plotting of reconstructed output data on maps.

GPlates Screenshot

Why GPlates?

Open source and free

Easy to use

Fast and reliable

Extensive open-access data and models

Wide-ranging interoperability with other software

Used by educators, researchers, and industries

Professional software development team

GPlates Citation:

Müller, R. D., Cannon, J., Qin, X., Watson, R. J., Gurnis, M., Williams, S., Pfaffelmoser, T., Seton, M., Russell, S. H. J. ,Zahirovic S. (2018). GPlates: Building a virtual Earth through deep time. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 19, 2243-2261.

PyGPlates, PlateTectonicTools, GPlately Citation:

Mather, B. R., Müller, R. D., Zahirovic, S., Cannon, J., Chin, M., Ilano, L., Wright, N. M., Alfonso, C., Williams, S., Tetley, M., Merdith, A. (2023) Deep time spatio-temporal data analysis using pyGPlates with PlateTectonicTools and GPlately. Geoscience Data Journal, 00, 1-8. Available from:
pyGPlates Screenshot
The GPlates Python library (pyGPlates) enables access to GPlates functionality via the Python programming language.


GPlates Portal Screenshot
The GPlates Web Portal is a gateway to a series of web pages for the interactive visualisation of cutting-edge geoscience datasets.

GPlates Web Portal

GPlates Web Service Screenshot
The GPlates Web Service interface allows users to access plate tectonics reconstruction services via Internet.

GPlates Web Service

Who are we?

EarthByte People

Funded by AuScope

AuScope Logo

Latest News

Eureka Prize Finalist and New Source Code Home

August 07, 2023

Eureka Prize Finalist

GPlates has been shortlisted for one of the 18 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes in 2023 – the Australian Research Data Commons Eureka Prize for Excellence in Research Software thanks to over 15 years of support by the AuScope National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy.

Adds tectonic subsidence.

Adds tectonic subsidence.

We are very excited to announce the launch of the new GPlates website.

This pyGPlates beta release adds support for Python 3 (in addition to Python 2.7).