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Difference between Material & Equipment?

Hi, can someone please explain me with an example the difference between a material and an equipment and why serial number is necessary??

Thanks in advance 😊

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  • Best Answer
    Posted on Dec 17, 2015 at 09:08 AM


    Equipments are also materials and you need these materials as equipments if they required to be serviced.

    Lets take an example of 2 wheeler manufacturing company... All the spare parts required to assemble the bike are materials and these will be consumed in order to produce the bike, where as we need few machines which were required to fix these spare parts together during bike assembly. they will be created as equipments because these machines required periodic maintenace either preventive or breakdown.

    Serial number is unique number and equipment will be created with the combination of serial number and material number. Hope it helps...

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  • Posted on Dec 17, 2015 at 09:15 AM


    Material is an object that can be procured, produced, assembled, sold, and replaced.
    Material master can exist as a physical object as stock quantity/stock quantity with value and it can also exist as a virtual representation of a structure or process. Generally materials are handled as groups of objects such as like 1000 Liters water or 100KG's steel bar or Service Activity.

    An equipment is a single physical object that is handled at a much more granular level than material master. An equipment is primarily installed somewhere and can have additional information's such as Manufacturing date,warranty and measurement data with capacity etc ...and which can go for maintenance if required such as High Pressure Pump or Thermic Fluid Boiler.

    Serial numbers is a unique number that identify an item where serialization is a way to keep track of individual items (material masters). An equipment links to a material master indicating the equipment is an instance of a material- sometime material plus serial number.


    Biju K

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  • Posted on Dec 17, 2015 at 09:21 AM


    In simple term for doing maintenance we need technical object(Equipment or functional location).If same technical object if purchasing department wants to procure for maintenance department we need to treat them as material.

    So that`s the reason SAP has provided option of linking material to technical object in plant maintenance as construction type in master under structure tab.Our same equipment can be treated as work center in PP and asset in Finance module.



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