Module Type Package (MTP)

Achieving standardized equipment data models and description language to streamline interoperability 
Digital technologies have progressively enhanced the performance and efficiency of process manufacturers for decades. Yet even though most plants and facilities take advantage of advanced automation capabilities, integrating functional areas within a site still presents significant challenges. Modularization has become the standard in plant design across the process industries, facilitating quicker installations and refurbishments. Consequently, this shift has increased the need for integrating supervisory automation with a variety of subsystems.

Module Type Package (MTP) Enables Plug-and-Produce Modular Manufacturing
Recognizing the growing call to address these concerns, multiple organizations and companies in the process automation industry developed a technology standard called Module Type Package (MTP). It is a vendor-neutral way for rapidly and reliably integrating a host such as a distributed control system (DCS) with the programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and human-machine interfaces (HMIs) used by modular subsystems.


For the construction plant

time-to-market becomes shorter.


For plants already in operation time-to-market becomes shorter.

downtime for expansion and maintenance becomes shorter




NAMUR, an international user association of automation technology and digitalization in process industries, has published recommendation NE148 “Automation Requirements relating to Modularization of Process Plants”, which defines MTP. In this document, MTP is described as a vendor-neutral description language facilitating the integration of PLC-based automated equipment systems with a host, which could be a L2 or L3 layer control system such as a DCS or another digital system. While MTP is not an industrial communications protocol, it provides a standardized approach for PLCs to transfer data, alarms, visualization, functional safety, and other information to the host DCS, and to accept commands from the host.

* NE_148 "Automation_Requirements_relating_to_Modularisation_of_Process_Plants"

The MTP logical architecture for a modular plant is organized into two layers:

Process Equipment Assembly (PEA): This lower layer consists of one or more PLC-based equipment modules, such as processing skids or utility infrastructure.
Process Orchestration Layer (POL): The upper layer is the host, which can be any control system on the L2 or L3 layer, such as a DCS. Users can also realize a host in the form of a process control system (PCS), a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system, or even a manufacturing execution system (MES). In any case, the POL host needs information from PEA modules to create visualization, and to support monitoring and control of PEA equipment.


To accomplish the integration between these layers, each PEA subsystem must export an MTP file for importing into the POL at design time. NAMUR NE148 defines the structure of the MTP file with provisions for all communications, tags, and HMI graphics so that the POL can instantiate what is needed to monitor and control each PEA. An MTP file also describes more involved services, which may be function modules with predefined behaviors and interfaces, or other operations such as those defined in S88. The export/import activity is performed once for each PEA, and thereafter the DCS uses standard industrial Ethernet communications protocols, such as OPC UA, to interact with the PEA.

Benefits of Using MTP 

As a vendor-agnostic and cross-platform technology, MTP provides many advantages for process plant owners, their suppliers, automation developers, and operators.
Any original equipment manufacturer or other firm supplying MTP-compliant subsystems will benefit from the widespread acceptance of their products. Developers using MTP, and operators working with the integration results daily will value the standardization and consistency the technology provides.
Using MTP, plant owners can implement modern and modular production plants, designed with a future-proof technology that minimizes development, installation, integration, commissioning, and support efforts and risk. 

Not convinced yet?

Here are some of the benefits of using MTP to integrate DCS and PLC process modules:
・Plant owners can combine equipment modules of their choice, without lock-in or dependence on suppliers.
・DCS and PLC engineers experience simplified development and support associated with standardized module interfaces and state models.
・Operators appreciate the consistent and unified HMI look and feel.
・Project teams realize shortened time-to-market and notable risk reduction.
・Lower total cost of ownership (TOC).
Yokogawa provides a comprehensive MTP solution, enabling developers, systems integrators, and end users to easily integrate the Yokogawa CI Server with MTP-compliant subsystem modules. By supporting MTP technology, Yokogawa enables industrial processing companies, their subsystem OEMs, and supporting systems integrators to take full advantage of many benefits.

Yokogawa MTP Solution 

A specific MTP Tool provides the best possible experience for Yokogawa users as they advance into developing modular plants using MTP technology. They can use the MTP Tool to import 3rd party PEA MTP files, or Yokogawa is available immediately to support these efforts.
The MTP Tool incorporates a component for generating graphics and a service orchestration configurator. To perform an import to the Yokogawa CI Server, users select the source PEA MTP import file. Other inputs include a standard MTP graphics library, project-specific symbol files, and a symbol mapping table.


The MTP Tool uses the information sources to automatically generate CI View graphic elements, including a unit graphic, associated faceplates, an instance object that defines the data mapping, and other default mapping parameters. For later support, quick loader files are created for I/O points and alarm settings.

The MTP Tool import process also defines other necessary services and their execution order, creating the necessary elements within CI Portal and CI Core. This flowchart-based engineering environment ensures these details are performed following a programming-free concept, greatly simplifying the task for users, compared with traditional methods from past years which required significant custom coding.


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