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Chemical and Materials Engineers

Overview

Chemical and Materials Engineers design and prepare specifications for chemical process systems and the construction and operation of commercial-scale chemical plants, supervise industrial processing and fabrication of products undergoing physical and chemical change, and investigate the properties of metals, ceramics, polymers and other materials and assess and develop their engineering and commercial applications. The links below provide quick access to basic information for this occupation.  Greater detail can be found using any of the page tabs above. A one page printable summary of the key statistics for this occupation can also be found under the Reports and Links tab above. Just click on the tab and follow the link for Occupational Bulletin.

Tasks

This occupation may include associated occupations with varying tasks.

  • preparing designs for chemical process systems and planning control systems for processes such as those used to remove and separate components, effect chemical changes, test and evaluate fuels, transfer heat, and control the storing and handling of solids,liquids and gases
  • monitoring the operation and maintenance of equipment to achieve maximum efficiency under safe operating conditions
  • ensuring correct materials and equipment are used and that they conform to specifications
  • diagnosing malfunctions in chemical plants and instituting remedial action
  • studying product utilisation and pollution control problems
  • reviewing plans for new products and submitting material selection recommendations in accordance with design specifications and factors such as strength, weight and cost
  • planning and implementing laboratory operations to develop new materials and fabrication procedures for new materials to fulfil production cost and performance standards
  • conferring with producers of materials, such as metals, ceramics, polymers, cements and elastomers, during the investigation and evaluation of materials suitable for specific product applications
  • reviewing product failure data and implementing laboratory tests to establish or reject possible causes, and advising on ways to overcome any problems

Job Titles

  • Chemical Engineer
  • Materials Engineer

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