Nuclear Equipment Operation Technicians

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About the Job

Operate equipment used for the release, control, or utilization of nuclear energy to assist scientists in laboratory or production activities.

It is also Called

  • Test and Research Reactor Operator
  • Systems Operator
  • Radioisotope Production Operator
  • Operations Technician
  • Nuclear Station Operator
  • Nuclear Reactor Technician
  • Nuclear Power Plant Process Control Worker
  • Nuclear Plant Equipment Operator (NAPEO)
  • Nuclear Operations Specialist
  • Nuclear Fuel Processing Technician
View All

What They Do

  • Collect air, water, gas or solid samples for testing to determine radioactivity levels or to ensure appropriate radioactive containment.
  • Prepare reports to communicate information such as contamination test results, decontamination results, or decontamination procedures.
  • Decontaminate objects by cleaning them using soap or solvents or by abrading using brushes, buffing machines, or sandblasting machines.
  • Identify and implement appropriate decontamination procedures, based on equipment and the size, nature, and type of contamination.
  • Set control panel switches to route electric power from sources and direct particle beams through injector units.
  • Communicate with accelerator maintenance personnel to ensure readiness of support systems, such as vacuum, water cooling, or radio frequency power sources.
  • Measure the intensity and identify the types of radiation in work areas, equipment, or materials, using radiation detectors or other instruments.
  • Calculate equipment operating factors, such as radiation times, dosages, temperatures, gamma intensities, or pressures, using standard formulas and conversion tables.
  • Warn maintenance workers of radiation hazards and direct workers to vacate hazardous areas.
  • Submit computations to supervisors for review.

Interests

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

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

Work Values

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

Things They Need to Know

  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • 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.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Education Required

Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Wages

In 2017, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $87,930 with most people making between $57,230 and $111,280

Outlook

0.00%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 510 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 490 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 0 openings due to growth and about 20 replacement openings for approximately 20 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education