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What Do Engineers Do?

What Do Engineers Do?

The following table is extracted from the Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-2015 edition published by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics

 
OCCUPATION
 
JOB SUMMARY
 
ENTRY-LEVEL EDUCATION
 
2012 MEDIAN PAY
 
     
Aerospace Engineers
 

Aerospace engineers design aircraft, spacecraft, satellites, and missiles. In addition, they test prototypes to make sure that they function according to design.  

Bachelor’s degree

$103,720

Agricultural Engineers
 

Agricultural engineers—also known as biological and agricultural engineers—work on a variety of activities. These activities range from aquaculture (raising food, such as fish, that thrive in water) to land farming to forestry; from developing biofuels to improving conservation; from planning animal environments to finding better ways to process food.

Bachelor’s degree

$74,000

Biomedical Engineers
 

Biomedical engineers analyze and design solutions to problems in biology and medicine, with the goal of improving the quality and effectiveness of patient care.

Bachelor’s degree

$86,960

Chemical Engineers
 

Chemical engineers apply the principles of chemistry, biology, and physics to solve problems. These problems involve the production or use of chemicals, fuel, drugs, food, and many other products. They design processes and equipment for large-scale safe and sustainable manufacturing, plan and test methods of manufacturing products and treating byproducts, and supervise production.

Bachelor’s degree

$94,350

Civil Engineers
 

Civil engineers design and supervise large construction projects, including roads, buildings, airports, tunnels, dams, bridges, and systems for water supply and sewage treatment.

Bachelor’s degree

$79,340

Computer Hardware Engineers
 

Computer hardware engineers research, design, develop, and test computer equipment such as chips, circuit boards, or routers. By solving complex problems in computer hardware, these engineers create rapid advances in computer technology.

Bachelor’s degree

$100,920

Electrical and Electronics Engineers
 

Electrical engineers design, develop, test, and supervise the manufacturing of electrical equipment such as electric motors, radar and navigation systems, communications systems, and power generation equipment. Electronics engineers design and develop electronic equipment, such as broadcast and communications systems—from portable music players to global positioning systems (GPS).

Bachelor’s degree

$89,630

Environmental Engineers
 

Environmental engineers use the principles of engineering, soil science, biology, and chemistry to develop solutions to environmental problems. They are involved in efforts to improve recycling, waste disposal, public health, and control of water and air pollution.

Bachelor’s degree

$80,890

Health and Safety Engineers
 

Health and safety engineers develop procedures and design systems to keep people from getting sick or injured and to keep property from being damaged. They combine knowledge of health or safety and of systems engineering to make sure that chemicals, machinery, software, furniture, and other products are not going to cause harm to people or buildings.

Bachelor’s degree

$76,830

Industrial Engineers
 

Industrial engineers find ways to eliminate wastefulness in production processes. They devise efficient ways to use workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.

Bachelor’s degree

$78,860

Marine Engineers and Naval Architects
 

Marine engineers and naval architects design, build, and maintain ships from aircraft carriers to submarines, from sailboats to tankers. Marine engineers work on the mechanical systems, such as propulsion and steering. Naval architects work on the basic design, including the form and stability of hulls.

Bachelor’s degree

$88,100

Materials Engineers
 

Materials engineers develop, process, and test materials used to create a range of products, from computer chips and aircraft wings to golf clubs and snow skis. They also help select materials and develop new ways to use materials.

Bachelor’s degree

$85,150

Mechanical Engineers
 

Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical devices, including tools, engines, and machines.

Bachelor’s degree

$80,580

Mining and Geological Engineers
 

Mining and geological engineers design mines for the safe and efficient removal of minerals, such as coal and metals, for manufacturing and utilities.

Bachelor’s degree

$84,320

Nuclear Engineers
 

Nuclear engineers research and develop the processes, instruments, and systems used to get benefits from nuclear energy and radiation. Many of these engineers find industrial and medical uses for radioactive materials—for example, in equipment used in medical diagnosis and treatment.

Bachelor’s degree

$104,270

Petroleum Engineers
 

Petroleum engineers design and develop methods for extracting oil and gas from deposits below the earth’s surface. Petroleum engineers also find new ways to extract oil and gas from older wells.

Bachelor’s degree

$130,280

Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technicians
 

Aerospace engineering and operations technicians operate and maintain equipment used in developing, testing, and producing new aircraft and spacecraft. Increasingly, they use computer-based modeling and simulation tools and processes in this work.

Associate’s degree

$61,530

Civil Engineering Technicians
 

Civil engineering technicians help civil engineers plan and design the construction of highways, bridges, utilities, and other major infrastructure projects. They also help with commercial, residential, and land development. Civil engineering technicians work under the direction of a licensed civil engineer.

Associate’s degree

$47,560

Electrical and Electronic Engineering Technicians
 

Electrical and electronic engineering technicians help engineers design and develop computers, communications equipment, medical monitoring devices, navigational equipment, and other electrical and electronic equipment. They often work in product evaluation and testing, using measuring and diagnostic devices to adjust, test, and repair equipment.

Associate’s degree

$57,850

Electro-mechanical Technicians
 

Electro-mechanical technicians combine knowledge of mechanical technology with knowledge of electrical and electronic circuits. They install, troubleshoot, repair, and upgrade electronic and computer-controlled mechanical systems, such as robotic assembly machines.

Associate’s degree

$51,820

Environmental Engineering Technicians
 

Environmental engineering technicians carry out the plans that environmental engineers develop. They test, operate, and, if necessary, modify equipment for preventing or cleaning up environmental pollution. They may collect samples for testing, or they may work to mitigate sources of environmental pollution.

Associate’s degree

$45,350

Industrial Engineering Technicians
 

Industrial engineering technicians plan ways to effectively use personnel, materials, and machines in factories, stores, hospitals, repair shops, and offices. As assistants to industrial engineers, they help prepare machinery and equipment layouts, plan workflows, conduct statistical production studies, and analyze production costs.

Associate’s degree

$50,980

Mechanical Engineering Technicians
 

Mechanical engineering technicians help mechanical engineers design, develop, test, and manufacture industrial machinery, consumer products, and other equipment. They may make sketches and rough layouts, record and analyze data, make calculations and estimates, and report their findings.

Associate’s degree

$51,980

Publish Date: Wednesday, January 8, 2014

 

The following paragraphs are taken from the Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-2011 edition published by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Engineers apply the principles of science and mathematics to develop economical solutions to technical problems. Their work is the link between scientific discoveries and the commercial applications that meet societal and consumer needs.

Many engineers develop new products. During the process, they consider several factors. For example, in developing an industrial robot, engineers specify the functional requirements precisely; design and test the robot's components; integrate the components to produce the final design; and evaluate the design's overall effectiveness, cost, reliability, and safety. This process applies to the development of many different products, such as chemicals, computers, powerplants, helicopters, and toys.

In addition to their involvement in design and development, many engineers work in testing, production, or maintenance. These engineers supervise production in factories, determine the causes of a component’s failure, and test manufactured products to maintain quality. They also estimate the time and cost required to complete projects. Supervisory engineers are responsible for major components or entire projects.

Engineers use computers extensively to produce and analyze designs; to simulate and test how a machine, structure, or system operates; to generate specifications for parts; to monitor the quality of products; and to control the efficiency of processes. Nanotechnology, which involves the creation of high-performance materials and components by integrating atoms and molecules, also is introducing entirely new principles to the design process.

For more details go to:  http://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/home.htm.

 


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