How to Become a Ceramic Engineer

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Ceramic engineering is a branch of engineering that focuses on creating a variety of objects from materials that are inorganic and non-metallic. Ceramic engineers are materials engineers that specialize in working with a variety of ceramic materials.


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What does a ceramic engineer do?

Ceramic engineers work with a variety of ceramic materials such as porcelain, glass, cement, and brick. The materials are processed at high temperatures for a variety of purposes. Ceramic engineers create new products and techniques and equipment for processing many different ceramic materials. They work with many different products such as nuclear reactors, glassware, and electronics. Many ceramic engineers specialize in a certain area such as research and development where they develop new materials in a synthetic form. Ceramic engineers are often employed by industries that use a variety of ceramics and some work for government agencies, universities, and research facilities,

What kind of training does a ceramic engineer need?

Ceramic engineers typically need at least a bachelor degree in ceramic engineering, materials engineering, or other related field. Some employers prefer applicants with graduate degrees. Prospective ceramic engineers often complete courses in engineering, physics, mathematics, and computer science. Most ceramic engineers complete internships while pursuing their education to gain practical experience in the field. Many employers provide some on the job training to enable new ceramic engineers to learn the necessary polices and procedures. Engineers that offer their services to the public in a direct manner must be licensed. Requirements vary by state, but typically include minimum education and experience and passing a state examination. Ceramic engineers must complete continuing education throughout their careers to keep their skills up to date and stay abreast with advancements in the field.

What are the prospects for a career as a ceramic engineer?

Employment of ceramic engineers is expected to grow about as fast as average for all professions, increasing 9% from 2008 to 2018 (1). The increased use of ceramic materials for a variety of purposes will drive job growth.

Job prospects are expected to be very good, especially for ceramic engineers with extensive experience. Many job openings will arise from the need to replace ceramic engineers that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.

How much do ceramic engineers make?

As of April 2010, ceramic engineers with 1 to 4 years experience earn average annual salaries between $55,296 and $74,576. Those with 5 to 9 years experience earn average annual salaries between $62,363 and $81,600 (2).

A career as a ceramic engineer is an excellent choice for individuals with a strong interest in ceramic engineering and using a variety of ceramic materials. Ceramic engineers must have a solid understanding of the processes and policies of working with many different types of ceramic materials. Patience, creativity, detail orientation, and analytical thinking are necessary traits. Ceramic engineers must have good communication and interpersonal skills and ability to work as part of a team.

Joshua T Osborne

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