Chemical Engineers

Design chemical plant equipment and devise processes for manufacturing chemicals and products, such as gasoline, synthetic rubber, plastics, detergents, cement, paper, and pulp, by applying principles and technology of chemistry, physics, and engineering.

Median Annual Wage: $96,940

Education: Bachelor's degree (72%); Master's degree (16%); Post-baccalaureate certificate (8%)

Projected Growth: Slower than average (3% to 7%)

Related Job Titles: Project Engineer; Process Engineer; Chemical Engineer; Engineer; Scientist; Development Engineer; Engineering Scientist; Process Control Engineer; Process Development Engineer; Refinery Process Engineer

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Chemical Engineers.

More Architecture and Engineering Careers

  • Troubleshoot problems with chemical manufacturing processes.
  • Evaluate chemical equipment and processes to identify ways to optimize performance or to ensure compliance with safety and environmental regulations.
  • Conduct research to develop new and improved chemical manufacturing processes.
  • Determine most effective arrangement of operations such as mixing, crushing, heat transfer, distillation, and drying.
  • Perform tests and monitor performance of processes throughout stages of production to determine degree of control over variables such as temperature, density, specific gravity, and pressure.
  • Design and plan layout of equipment.
  • Prepare estimate of production costs and production progress reports for management.
  • Design measurement and control systems for chemical plants based on data collected in laboratory experiments and in pilot plant operations.
  • Develop processes to separate components of liquids or gases or generate electrical currents using controlled chemical processes.
  • Perform laboratory studies of steps in manufacture of new product and test proposed process in small scale operation such as a pilot plant.
  • Direct activities of workers who operate or who are engaged in constructing and improving absorption, evaporation, or electromagnetic equipment.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Chemical Engineers.

  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Systems Evaluation - Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Chemical Engineers.

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