careers.novascotia.ca

Chemical Engineers

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NOC:2134
Occupation:Chemical Engineers
Category:Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

About the job

Nature of work:

Chemical engineers research, design, and develop chemical processes and equipment, oversee the operation and maintenance of industrial chemical, plastics, pharmaceutical, resource, pulp and paper, and food processing plants and perform duties related to chemical quality control, environmental protection and biochemical or biotechnical engineering. Chemical engineers are employed in a wide range of manufacturing and processing industries, consulting firms, government, research and educational institutions.

Job duties:
Chemical engineers perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Conduct economic and technical feasibility studies in areas related to chemical, petroleum, pulp and paper, food or other processing industries.
  • Conduct research into the development or improvement of chemical engineering processes, reactions and materials.
  • Evaluate chemical process technology and equipment and determine production specifications.
  • Design and test chemical processing and associated plants and equipment.
  • Oversee the construction, modification, operation and maintenance of pilot plants, processing units or processing plants.
  • Establish and conduct quality control programs, operating procedures and control strategies to ensure consistency and adherence to standards for raw materials, products and waste products or emissions.
  • Prepare contract documents and evaluate tenders for the process aspects of industrial construction.
  • Supervise technicians, technologists and other engineers.
  • May work in an administrative capacity, for example, in the development of guidelines and specifications for the handling of dangerous chemicals, environmental protection, or standards for foods, materials and consumer goods.

Chemical engineers may specialize in the products and processes of a particular industry such as pulp and paper manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, petroleum refining, energy processing, plastics, metal extraction and refining, or adhesives and coatings production. They may also specialize in functional areas of various industries such as process control, pollution control or fermentation processes.

Sample job titles:
  • biochemical engineer
  • biotechnical engineer
  • chemical engineer
  • chemical process engineer
  • electrochemical engineer
  • environmental chemical engineer
  • petrochemical engineer
  • waste treatment engineer
Skills:

You should be interested in the use and application of chemicals in process industries. Good observation skills and the ability to think analytically and logically are important. You should be patient and curious, and enjoy problem-solving and carrying out experiments. The ability to communicate and cooperate with others is necessary, as engineers often work in teams. Computer skills are also very helpful.

Job requirements:
  • A bachelor's degree in chemical engineering or in a related engineering discipline is required.
  • A master's degree or doctorate in a related engineering discipline may be required.
  • Licensing by a provincial or territorial association of professional engineers is required to approve engineering drawings and reports and to practice as a Professional Engineer (P.Eng.).
  • Engineers are eligible for registration following graduation from an accredited educational program, and after three or four years of supervised work experience in engineering and passing a professional practice examination.
Other considerations:

Workers should be prepared to keep up to date with changing technology. Some engineers work in an office most of the time, while others work in laboratories, industrial plants, or construction sites where they inspect, supervise, and solve on-site problems. Supervisory and senior positions in this group require experience. There is considerable mobility between chemical engineering specializations at the less senior levels. Engineers often work in a multidisciplinary environment and acquire knowledge and skills through work experience that may allow them to practice in associated areas of science, engineering, sales, marketing, or management. Chemical engineers work closely with chemists and other scientists and engineers and mobility is possible between some fields of specialization.

Labour Market Information

Work Prospects:Undetermined

This is not a large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities may not be that frequent. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Chemical Engineers most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions.

The median employment income for 68% of Chemical Engineers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $86,510. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

OccupationEstimated employment in 2018Estimated change in employment between 2017 and 2019Estimated openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019Estimated rate of unemployment in 2018 Estimated hourly earnings in 2015 (learn more)Estimated annual earnings in 2015
Chemical Engineers105xxx
Minimum:  N/A
Median:  N/A
Maximum:  N/A
Minimum:  N/A
Median: $82,530
Maximum:  N/A
Occupations in Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology25,875Strong growth3,095Low
Minimum: $17.69
Median: $31.35
Maximum: $47.18
Minimum: $13,568
Median: $60,422
Maximum: $107,009
Chemical EngineersCompared to: Occupations in Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
Percent employed full-time100%94%
Percent self-employed0%7%
Where will I likely work?
Area of EmploymentChemical EngineersCompared to: All NS Occupations
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Southern9%x12%$30,581
Northern13%x16%$33,660
Cape Breton13%x13%$32,974
Halifax74%x47%$41,209
Annapolis Valley9%x13%$32,958
What are the workers like?
AgeChemical EngineersCompared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
% Employed% Employed
15-249%x
25-3445%14%
35-4427%33%
45-5418%32%
55-649%18%
65+N/A4%
Median Age4243
GenderChemical EngineersCompared to: Occupations in Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
% Employed% Employed
Female17%20%
Male83%80%
EducationChemical EngineersCompared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Less than high schoolN/Ax0.7%$28,107
High school9.1%x12.1%$35,125
Trades certificate9.1%x6.8%$54,923
College certificate or diplomaN/A$73,54733.7%$52,476
University certificate or diploma9.1%x3.7%$52,446
Bachelor's degree63.6%$78,97729.7%$58,011
University advanced certificate or diplomaN/Ax2.0%$54,917
Master's degreeN/A$93,9179.7%$37,706
Doctorate13.6%x1.7%$65,565
Medicine, dentistry, veterinary, optometry9.1%x0.1%$57,566
Total100%100%
Wage Disclaimer

Hourly earnings data are from the Labour Force Survey by Statistics Canada. Data are not available for all occupations. Hourly earnings are calculated based on usual hours worked per week. This is how an annual salary, for instance, gets converted to an hourly rate. The data include full and part-time workers along with new and experienced workers. Self-employed workers are excluded.

Annual employment income data reported in the Work Prospects section, are from the 2011 National Household Survey by Statistics Canada. Much of the data (around 70%) came directly from tax records. The data relates to the year 2010 and includes total wages and salaries and net income from self-employment.

Sources

Employment Requirements & Contacts

Regulations:
Professional Engineer
Right to Title and Practice:This job is regulated and the job title is protected in Nova Scotia (you may not use this job title without holding a provincial licence). A licence shows that the holder has met provincial requirements and is required to work in this job.
Regulating body:
Engineers Nova Scotia
1355 Barrington Street
Halifax, NS B3J 1Y9
(888) 802-7367
(902) 423-9769
info@engineersnovascotia.ca
Useful contacts:
Consulting Engineers of Nova Scotia
PO Box 613, Station "M"
Halifax, NS B3J 2R7
Tel: (902) 461-1325
Fax: (902) 461-1321
cens@eastlink.ca
Chemical Institute of Canada
222 Queen Street, Suite 400
Ottawa, ON K1P 5V9
Tel: (613) 232-6252
Fax: (613) 232-5862
info@cheminst.ca
Association of Consulting Engineering Companies Canada
130 Albert Street, Suite 420
Ottawa, ON K1P 5G4
Tel: (613) 236-0569
Fax: (613) 236-6193
info@acec.ca

Training Paths & Education

Program Name:Chemical engineering
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals to apply mathematical and scientific principles to the design, development and operational evaluation of systems employing chemical processes, such as chemical reactors, kinetic systems, electrochemical systems, energy conservation processes, heat and mass transfer systems, and separation processes; and the applied analysis of chemical problems such as corrosion, particle abrasion, energy loss, pollution, and fluid mechanics.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
Cape Breton University
PO Box 5300 1250 Grand Lake Road
Sydney, NS B1P 6L2
(888) 959-9995
registrar@cbu.ca
Program Name:Engineering - General
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that generally prepares individuals to apply mathematical and scientific principles to solve a wide variety of practical problems in industry, social organization, public works, and commerce.
See all institutions providing this program+
Acadia University
15 University Avenue
Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6
(902) 542-2201
agi@acadiau.ca
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
St. Francis Xavier University
PO Box 5000
Antigonish, NS B2G 2W5
(902) 867-2219
admit@stfx.ca
Saint Mary's University
923 Robie Street
Halifax, NS B3H 3C3
(902) 420-5400
admission.status@smu.ca
Cape Breton University
PO Box 5300 1250 Grand Lake Road
Sydney, NS B1P 6L2
(888) 959-9995
registrar@cbu.ca
Dalhousie University Faculty of Agriculture
PO Box 550
Truro, NS B2N 5E3
(902) 893-6600
enrolment.services@dal.ca
Program Name:Mathematics - General
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the college or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any general program that focuses on the analysis of quantities, magnitudes, forms, and their relationships, using symbolic logic and language. These programs include courses in algebra, calculus, functional analysis, geometry, number theory, logic, topology and other mathematical specializations.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
University of King's College
6350 Coburg Road
Halifax, NS B3H 2A1
(902) 422-1271
admissions@ukings.ca
Mount Saint Vincent University
166 Bedford Highway
Halifax, NS B3M 2J6
(902) 457-6117
admissions@msvu.ca
St. Francis Xavier University
PO Box 5000
Antigonish, NS B2G 2W5
(902) 867-2219
admit@stfx.ca
Saint Mary's University
923 Robie Street
Halifax, NS B3H 3C3
(902) 420-5400
admission.status@smu.ca
Cape Breton University
PO Box 5300 1250 Grand Lake Road
Sydney, NS B1P 6L2
(888) 959-9995
registrar@cbu.ca
Program Name:Physical sciences - General
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the college or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the major topics, concepts, processes, and interrelationships of physical phenomena as studied in any combination of physical science disciplines.
See all institutions providing this program+
Saint Mary's University
923 Robie Street
Halifax, NS B3H 3C3
(902) 420-5400
admission.status@smu.ca
Additional resources:

Work Occupation Video(s)

Chemical Engineer

Environmental Engineer