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Chemical Technicians Career

Career Description

Conduct chemical and physical laboratory tests to assist scientists in making qualitative and quantitative analyses of solids, liquids, and gaseous materials for research and development of new products or processes, quality control, maintenance of environmental standards, and other work involving experimental, theoretical, or practical application of chemistry and related sciences.

What Job Titles Chemical Technicians Might Have

  • Chemical Analyst
  • Chemical Technician
  • Laboratory Analyst (Lab Analyst)
  • Laboratory Technician (Lab Tech)

What Chemical Technicians Do

  • Conduct chemical or physical laboratory tests to assist scientists in making qualitative or quantitative analyses of solids, liquids, or gaseous materials.
  • Maintain, clean, or sterilize laboratory instruments or equipment.
  • Set up and conduct chemical experiments, tests, and analyses, using techniques such as chromatography, spectroscopy, physical or chemical separation techniques, or microscopy.
  • Monitor product quality to ensure compliance with standards and specifications.
  • Prepare chemical solutions for products or processes, following standardized formulas, or create experimental formulas.
  • Provide and maintain a safe work environment by participating in safety programs, committees, or teams and by conducting laboratory or plant safety audits.
  • Provide technical support or assistance to chemists or engineers.
  • Train new employees on topics such as the proper operation of laboratory equipment.
  • Order and inventory materials to maintain supplies.
  • Compile and interpret results of tests and analyses.
  • Develop or conduct programs of sampling and analysis to maintain quality standards of raw materials, chemical intermediates, or products.
  • Write technical reports or prepare graphs or charts to document experimental results.
  • Direct or monitor other workers producing chemical products.
  • Design or fabricate experimental apparatus to develop new products or processes.
  • Operate experimental pilot plants, assisting with experimental design.
  • Develop new chemical engineering processes or production techniques.

What Chemical Technicians Should Be Good At

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.

What Chemical Technicians Should Be Interested In

  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

What Chemical Technicians Need to Learn

  • Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Leaf iconThis career is a green occupation.
Median Salary: $45,840

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.