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Materials Engineer

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What is a Materials Engineer?

Materials Engineer Definition Evaluate materials and develop machinery and processes to manufacture materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications. Develop new uses for known materials. Includes those engineers working with composite materials or specializing in one type of material, such as graphite, metal and metal alloys, ceramics and glass, plastics and polymers, and naturally occurring materials. Includes metallurgists and metallurgical engineers, ceramic engineers, and welding engineers.

List of Materials Engineer Job Duties

  • Replicate the characteristics of materials and their components with computers.
  • Analyze product failure data and laboratory test results to determine causes of problems and develop solutions.
  • Conduct training sessions on new material products, applications, or manufacturing methods for customers and their employees.
  • Perform managerial functions, such as preparing proposals and budgets, analyzing labor costs, and writing reports.
  • Design processing plants and equipment.
  • Modify properties of metal alloys, using thermal and mechanical treatments.

Materials Engineer Skills

Below is a list of the skills most Materials Engineers say are important on the job.

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.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Science: Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Types of Materials Engineer

  • Forensic Materials Engineer
  • Materials Branch Chief
  • Foundry Metallurgist
  • Stress Engineer
  • Supplier Quality Engineer (SQE)

Materials Engineer Job Outlook

There were about 27,000 jobs for Materials Engineer in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 1.9% which is below the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 500 new jobs for Materials Engineer by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 1,900 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Materials Engineers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Materials Engineer are Utah, Nevada, and Arkansas. Watch out if you plan on working in Washington, Kansas, or West Virginia. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

How Much Does a Materials Engineer Make?

The average yearly salary of a Materials Engineer ranges between $57,110 and $148,110.

Salary Ranges for Materials Engineers

Materials Engineers who work in New Mexico, Maryland, or Tennessee, make the highest salaries.

How much do Materials Engineers make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $94,590
Alaska $99,010
Arizona $90,020
Arkansas $87,780
California $107,570
Colorado $100,940
Connecticut $98,310
Florida $99,570
Georgia $86,240
Illinois $84,310
Indiana $80,560
Iowa $94,930
Kansas $106,350
Kentucky $74,720
Louisiana $109,410
Maine $93,630
Maryland $116,380
Massachusetts $95,640
Michigan $82,570
Minnesota $96,780
Mississippi $85,330
Missouri $93,100
Montana $65,110
Nebraska $81,710
Nevada $95,070
New Hampshire $93,230
New Jersey $90,740
New Mexico $124,780
New York $100,880
Ohio $91,360
Oklahoma $92,470
Oregon $91,690
Pennsylvania $89,180
South Carolina $87,470
Tennessee $111,670
Texas $99,790
Utah $88,100
Vermont $90,970
Virginia $97,470
West Virginia $88,320
Wisconsin $82,410

Tools & Technologies Used by Materials Engineers

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Materials Engineers may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Python
  • Microsoft Access
  • Data entry software
  • Word processing software
  • SAP
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Microsoft SharePoint
  • The MathWorks MATLAB
  • IBM Notes
  • Microsoft Visual Basic
  • Computer aided design CAD software
  • Minitab
  • National Instruments LabVIEW

How do I Become a Materials Engineer?

Individuals working as a Materials Engineer have obtained the following education levels:

Materials Engineer Degree Level

What work experience do I need to become a Materials Engineer?

Materials Engineer Work Experience

Where Materials Engineers Are Employed

Materials Engineer Sectors

The table below shows the approximate number of Materials Engineers employed by various industries.

Materials Engineer Industries

You May Also Be Interested In…

Those thinking about becoming a Materials Engineer might also be interested in the following careers:

References:

Image Credit: Panoramedia via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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