Chemical engineers conduct research and develop, advise on and direct commercial-scale chemical processes and production of various substances and items such as crude oil, petroleum derivatives, food and drink products, medicines, or synthetic materials. They direct maintenance and repair of chemical plant and equipment and study and advise on chemical aspects of particular materials, products or processes.
Tasks include -
(a) conducting research and advising on, and developing, commercial-scale chemical processes to refine crude oil and other liquids or gases, and to produce substances and items such as petroleum derivatives, explosives, food and drink products, medicines, or synthetic materials;
(b) specifying chemical production methods, materials and quality standards and ensuring that they conform to specifications;
(c) establishing control standards and procedures to ensure safety and efficiency of chemical production operations and safety of workers’ operating equipment or of those working in close proximity to ongoing chemical reactions;
(d) designing chemical plant equipment and devising processes for manufacturing chemicals and products;
(e) performing tests throughout stages of production to determine degree of control over variables, including temperature, density, specific gravity, and pressure;
(f) developing safety procedures to be employed;
(g) preparing estimates of production costs and production progress reports for management;
(h) performing laboratory studies of steps in the manufacture of new products and testing proposed processes in small-scale operations such as a pilot plant.
Examples of the occupations classified here:
- Chemical engineer
- Fuel technologist
- Plastics technologist
- Refinery process engineer