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Details for Marine Engineers


Design, develop, and take responsibility for the installation of ship machinery and related equipment including propulsion machines and power supply systems.


  • Prepare, or direct the preparation of, product or system layouts and detailed drawings and schematics.
  • Inspect marine equipment and machinery in order to draw up work requests and job specifications.
  • Conduct analytical, environmental, operational, or performance studies in order to develop designs for products, such as marine engines, equipment, and structures.
  • Design and oversee testing, installation, and repair of marine apparatus and equipment.
  • Prepare plans, estimates, design and construction schedules, and contract specifications, including any special provisions.
  • Investigate and observe tests on machinery and equipment for compliance with standards.
  • Coordinate activities with regulatory bodies in order to ensure repairs and alterations are at minimum cost, consistent with safety.
  • Conduct environmental, operational, or performance tests on marine machinery and equipment.
  • Prepare technical reports for use by engineering, management, or sales personnel.
  • Maintain contact with, and formulate reports for, contractors and clients in order to ensure completion of work at minimum cost.
  • Evaluate operation of marine equipment during acceptance testing and shakedown cruises.
  • Analyze data in order to determine feasibility of product proposals.
  • Determine conditions under which tests are to be conducted, as well as sequences and phases of test operations.
  • Procure materials needed to repair marine equipment and machinery.
  • Confer with research personnel in order to clarify or resolve problems, and to develop or modify designs.
  • Review work requests, and compare them with previous work completed on ships in order to ensure that costs are economically sound.
  • Act as liaisons between ships' captains and shore personnel in order to ensure that schedules and budgets are maintained, and that ships are operated safely and efficiently.
  • Perform monitoring activities in order to ensure that ships comply with international regulations and standards for life saving equipment and pollution preventatives.
  • Check, test, and maintain automatic controls and alarm systems.
  • Supervise other engineers and crewmembers, and train them for routine and emergency duties.
  • Maintain and coordinate repair of marine machinery and equipment for installation on vessels.
  • Maintain records of engineering department activities, including expense records and details of equipment maintenance and repairs.
  • Schedule machine overhauls and the servicing of electrical, heating, ventilation, refrigeration, water, and sewage systems.


  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Enterprising - Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Education, Training, Experience

  • Education - Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.
  • Experience - A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.



  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • 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.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Operations Analysis - Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Troubleshooting - Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  • Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • 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.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Management of Personnel Resources - Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.

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Wages for this career
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