Geophysical Data Technicians

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About the Job

Measure, record, or evaluate geological data, using sonic, electronic, electrical, seismic, or gravity-measuring instruments to prospect for oil or gas. May collect or evaluate core samples or cuttings.

It is also Called

  • Utility Locator
  • Underground Utility Locator
  • Technical Operator
  • Technical Assistant
  • Surface Logging Systems Logger (SLS Logger)
  • Sounding Device Operator
  • Soils Technician
  • Sensitometrist
  • Seismometer Operator
  • Seismographer
View All

What They Do

  • Conduct geophysical surveys of potential sites for wind farms or solar installations to determine their suitability.
  • Compile data used to address environmental issues, such as the suitability of potential landfill sites.
  • Collect geological data from potential geothermal energy plant sites.
  • Collect data on underground areas, such as reservoirs, that could be used in carbon sequestration operations.
  • Apply new technologies, such as improved seismic imaging techniques, to locate untapped oil or natural gas deposits.
  • Develop and design packing materials and handling procedures for shipping of objects.
  • Prepare and attach packing instructions to shipping containers.
  • Diagnose or repair malfunctioning instruments or equipment, using manufacturers' manuals and hand tools.
  • Evaluate and interpret core samples and cuttings, and other geological data used in prospecting for oil or gas.
  • Measure geological characteristics used in prospecting for oil or gas, using measuring instruments.

Interests

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

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

Work Values

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

Things They Need to Know

  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • 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.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • 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.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

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.
  • 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.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Science - Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Education Required

Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.

Wages

In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $52,220 with most people making between $26,010 and $85,760

Outlook

0.19%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 520 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 530 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 1 openings due to growth and about 19 replacement openings for approximately 20 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education