Nuclear Power Reactor Operators

Operate or control nuclear reactors. Move control rods, start and stop equipment, monitor and adjust controls, and record data in logs. Implement emergency procedures when needed. May respond to abnormalities, determine cause, and recommend corrective action.

Median Annual Wage: $82,500

Education: High school diploma or equivalent (50%); Post-secondary certificate (16%); Bachelor's degree (15%)

Projected Growth: Little or no change (-2% to 2%)

Related Job Titles: Reactor Operator (RO); Nuclear Control Room Operator; Nuclear Power Reactor Operator; Nuclear Plant Operator (NPO); Nuclear Control Operator; Nuclear Station Operator (NSO); Nuclear Reactor Operator; Nuclear Unit Operator; Licensed Reactor Operator; Nuclear Supervising Operator (NSO)

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Source: O*NET OnLine information for Nuclear Power Reactor Operators.

More Production Careers

  • Adjust controls to position rod and to regulate flux level, reactor period, coolant temperature, or rate of power flow, following standard procedures.
  • Develop or implement actions such as lockouts, tagouts, or clearances to allow equipment to be safely repaired.
  • Respond to system or unit abnormalities, diagnosing the cause, and recommending or taking corrective action.
  • Monitor all systems for normal running conditions, performing activities such as checking gauges to assess output or the effects of generator loading on other equipment.
  • Monitor or operate boilers, turbines, wells, or auxiliary power plant equipment.
  • Note malfunctions of equipment, instruments, or controls and report these conditions to supervisors.
  • Implement operational procedures, such as those controlling start-up or shut-down activities.
  • Record operating data, such as the results of surveillance tests.
  • Participate in nuclear fuel element handling activities, such as preparation, transfer, loading, or unloading.
  • Dispatch orders or instructions to personnel through radiotelephone or intercommunication systems to coordinate auxiliary equipment operation.
  • Review and edit standard operating procedures.
  • Conduct inspections or operations outside of control rooms as necessary.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Nuclear Power Reactor Operators.

  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.

Source: O*NET OnLine information for Nuclear Power Reactor Operators.

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