Petrochemical engineers turn raw materials into valuable products using petrochemical processes.
Petrochemical engineers are the wizards of the chemical world, constantly using their scientific know-how to combine elements and create new synthetic substances that are useful on a daily basis. Petrochemical engineers use petrochemicals to process our foods, create our clothes, fuel our cars, heat our homes, and recycle new materials from refuse. They turn raw materials into valuable products.
Petrochemical engineers require a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering or a related petroleum engineering field. Afterwards, they need to register as a professional engineer (PEng) within an association in order to practice in their field. Some engineers also get master’s degrees in a specific area, such as petroleum engineering.
Petrochemical engineers work in a variety of industries, alongside scientists, mathematicians and administrators. The majority of their work revolves around using creative and analytical thinking to come up with new or more cost-effective processes for producing products. Some of the daily tasks include:
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median yearly wages of materials scientists (including petrochemical engineers) were $80,300 in May of 2009. The middle 50% earned between $59,810 and $102,840. Meanwhile the lowest 10% of forensic science technicians earned less than $43,820 while the top 90% earned more than $125,760.