Fuel Cell Engineers

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About the Job

Design, evaluate, modify, or construct fuel cell components or systems for transportation, stationary, or portable applications.

It is also Called

  • Subsystems Engineer
  • Senior Stack Engineer
  • Senior Scientist
  • Senior Research Engineer
  • Senior Engineer
  • Scientist/Engineer
  • Research Engineer
  • Professor of Chemical Engineering
  • Mobile Battery Technician
  • Fuel Cell Test Engineer
View All

What They Do

  • Integrate electric drive subsystems with other vehicle systems to optimize performance or mitigate faults.
  • Manage fuel cell battery hybrid system architecture, including sizing of components, such as fuel cells, energy storage units, or electric drives.
  • Identify or define vehicle and system integration challenges for fuel cell vehicles.
  • Coordinate fuel cell engineering or test schedules with departments outside engineering, such as manufacturing.
  • Authorize release of fuel cell parts, components, or subsystems for production.
  • Evaluate the power output, system cost, or environmental impact of new hydrogen or non-hydrogen fuel cell system designs.
  • Develop or evaluate systems or methods of hydrogen storage for fuel cell applications.
  • Provide technical consultation or direction related to the development or production of fuel cell systems.
  • Recommend or implement changes to fuel cell system designs.
  • Design fuel cell systems, subsystems, stacks, assemblies, or components, such as electric traction motors or power electronics.


People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: RI.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Realistic interests, but also prefer Investigative environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Achievement, but also value Working Conditions and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • 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.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Education Required

Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).


In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $86,270 with most people making between $52,410 and $126,690


avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 10,390 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 11,160 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 77 openings due to growth and about 333 replacement openings for approximately 410 total annual openings.

Pennsylvania Department of Education