Career summary

Details for Mechanical Engineering Technicians


Description

Apply theory and principles of mechanical engineering to modify, develop, and test machinery and equipment under direction of engineering staff or physical scientists.

Tasks

  • Discuss changes in design, method of manufacture and assembly, and drafting techniques and procedures with staff and coordinate corrections.
  • Calculate required capacities for equipment of proposed system to obtain specified performance and submit data to engineering personnel for approval.
  • Review project instructions and blueprints to ascertain test specifications, procedures, and objectives, and test nature of technical problems such as redesign.
  • Draft detail drawing or sketch for drafting room completion or to request parts fabrication by machine, sheet or wood shops.
  • Analyze test results in relation to design or rated specifications and test objectives, and modify or adjust equipment to meet specifications.
  • Record test procedures and results, numerical and graphical data, and recommendations for changes in product or test methods.
  • Confer with technicians and submit reports of test results to engineering department and recommend design or material changes.
  • Read dials and meters to determine amperage, voltage, electrical output and input at specific operating temperature to analyze parts performance.
  • Review project instructions and specifications to identify, modify and plan requirements fabrication, assembly and testing.
  • Set up and conduct tests of complete units and components under operational conditions to investigate proposals for improving equipment performance.
  • Set up prototype and test apparatus and operate test controlling equipment to observe and record prototype test results.
  • Devise, fabricate, and assemble new or modified mechanical components for products such as industrial machinery or equipment, and measuring instruments.
  • Operate drill press, grinders, engine lathe, or other machines to modify parts tested or to fabricate experimental parts for testing.
  • Evaluate tool drawing designs by measuring drawing dimensions and comparing with original specifications for form and function using engineering skills.
  • Prepare parts sketches and write work orders and purchase requests to be furnished by outside contractors.
  • Estimate cost factors including labor and material for purchased and fabricated parts and costs for assembly, testing, or installing.
  • Test equipment, using test devices attached to generator, voltage regulator, or other electrical parts, such as generators or spark plugs.
  • Inspect lines and figures for clarity and return erroneous drawings to designer for correction.

Interests

  • 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.
  • 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 occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.

Knowledge

  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Physics - Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

Skills

  • 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.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Related careers

  • Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers, and Weighers
  • Machinists
  • Marine Architects
  • Marine Engineers
  • Mining and Geological Engineers, Including Mining Safety Engineers
  • Model Makers, Metal and Plastic
  • Petroleum Engineers