Career as a Ceramic Engineer


Summary

Ceramic Engineers are specialized materials engineers who work with ceramics, which are nonmetallic, inorganic materials that are processed at high temperatures. Glass, porcelain, brick, and cement are all examples of ceramics. Ceramic engineers develop new ceramic products as well as methods and equipment for processing ceramic materials. They work with a wide variety of products, ranging from glassware and electronic components to nuclear reactors and linings for blast furnaces and jet engines

Ceramic Engineers often specialize in one type of work. For example, many are involved in research and development. They develop new ceramic materials synthetically or from minerals found in the earth. Ceramics for superconductivity require rare earth minerals, including yttrium and erbium. Other ceramic engineers advance the technology of existing ceramics, such as improving heat and fire resistance. Ceramic engineers may also explore new uses for ceramic products, such as using ceramics in miniaturized circuits and human bone and teeth replacements. Many ceramic engineers are involved in production. They direct the processing of the natural raw minerals and synthetic materials used to make ceramics. They also design the kilns and other equipment used in manufacturing as well as direct the crews that build the plants and operate the kilns. Other ceramic engineers work in sales and show customers ways to use ceramics to solve their design and production problems. They sometimes oversee the installation and operation of ceramic equipment in customers' plants.

As a Ceramic Engineer, the duties includes to plan and evaluate engineering projects, supervise others and analyze product results, tests and failures. The work may also involve recommending ceramic materials for new products and managerial tasks like preparing budgets and writing reports. They are also likely to consult with other engineers, scientists, technologists and executives to realize goals. In the office, the work with computer-aided design (CAD) programs to make product models and anticipate potential design problems.

Work Environment

Working conditions depend on the area of employment within the field. Ceramic engineers in research and development work, mostly in modern offices and laboratories. Those involved in production are likely to spend more time at production or construction sites. They may have to work overtime or rotating shifts. Sales engineers must travel extensively. All ceramic engineers spend additional time on the job when deadlines must be met. Ceramic engineers must be able to solve problems and communicate their ideas to others. They should have skill in science and mathematics. Because they often work as part of a team, ceramic engineers should also be able to cooperate and work well with others.

Entry Level Education

  • Bachelor’s / Master’s Degree in Ceramic Engineering or Materials Science.
  • Doctoral Degrees in Engineering.

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