Thermodynamics in Engineering [Mechanical engineering]

Thermodynamics in Engineering

Thermodynamics Engineer Employment Information

A thermodynamics engineer applies the theory of thermodynamics to many types of mechanical systems. This theory involves the laws of heat distribution, heat flow and heat conversion. Thermodynamics is taught in most engineering degree programs, including civil, mechanical and chemical engineering. Because of this, thermodynamics engineers typically have a degree in and work in a specific field of engineering and apply thermodynamics as needed.

Thermodynamics engineers can find employment in several industries. Chemical manufacturing companies, the aerospace industry, manufacturers of mechanical parts and engines, electronics and electrical engineering companies and industrial manufacturing plants might all seek the services of a thermodynamics engineer.

Required Education

A bachelor's or master's degree in chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, environmental engineering, aerospace engineering, civil engineering or biological engineering can prepare students to pursue a career as a thermodynamics engineer. Core courses in nearly all college and university engineering programs include those in heat transfer and thermodynamics.

Skills Required

A thermodynamics engineer should have a firm grasp of mathematical concepts and laws of physics and be mechanically inclined. An understanding of chemistry can be helpful. Problem-solving skills are also essential for success as a thermodynamics engineer.

Career and Economic Outlook

Thermodynamics engineers are generally schooled in a specific area of engineering, and thus career and outlook data is separated by type of engineering. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment opportunities in all engineering fields are expected to grow from about 5-27% during the 2012-2022 decade, with the highest growth (both over 25%) expected in biomedical and petroleum engineering. In 2012, the median annual salary for engineers in general was $86, 200, according to the BLS.

Mechanical Engineering Technician

Mechanical engineering technicians assist mechanical engineers with designing, building and using products or machines. A 2-year degree is the typical education requirement. In May 2012, the BLS reported that these technicians earned an average annual salary of $53, 830. The BLS projects that this career field will grow at a slower-than-average pace of 5% during the 2012-2022 decade.

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