What Do Nuclear Engineers Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

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Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life

Job Description

Job Description

Nuclear Engineers conduct research on nuclear engineering projects or apply principles and theory of nuclear science to problems concerned with release, control, and use of nuclear energy and nuclear waste disposal. They also initiate corrective actions or order plant shutdowns in emergency situations.

Other tasks include:

  • Monitor nuclear facility operations to identify any design, construction, or operation practices that violate safety regulations and laws or that could jeopardize the safety of operations.
  • Design or develop nuclear equipment, such as reactor cores, radiation shielding, or associated instrumentation or control mechanisms.
  • Examine accidents to obtain data that can be used to design preventive measures.
  • Direct operating or maintenance activities of operational nuclear power plants to ensure efficiency and conformity to safety standards.
  • Recommend preventive measures to be taken in the handling of nuclear technology, based on data obtained from operations monitoring or from evaluation of test results.
  • Write operational instructions to be used in nuclear plant operation or nuclear fuel or waste handling and disposal.

We asked Nuclear Engineers how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction

67%

How meaningful is this job

67%


67% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 67% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.



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Typical Day At Work

On a daily basis, Nuclear Engineers direct operating or maintenance activities of operational nuclear power plants to ensure efficiency and conformity to safety standards. They monitor nuclear facility operations to identify any design, construction, or operation practices that violate safety regulations and laws or that could jeopardize the safety of operations.

A typical day for a Nuclear Engineer will also include:

  • Keep abreast of developments and changes in the nuclear field by reading technical journals or by independent study and research.
  • Recommend preventive measures to be taken in the handling of nuclear technology, based on data obtained from operations monitoring or from evaluation of test results.
  • Direct environmental compliance activities associated with nuclear plant operations or maintenance.
  • Design or oversee construction or operation of nuclear reactors or power plants or nuclear fuels reprocessing and reclamation systems.
  • Write operational instructions to be used in nuclear plant operation or nuclear fuel or waste handling and disposal.

We asked some Nuclear Engineers a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job? 68% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job? 50% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job? 95% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job? 14% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job? 0% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job? 18% said yes


Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Nuclear Engineers also prepare technical reports of findings or recommendations, based on synthesized analyses of test results. They may also discuss construction project proposals with interested parties, such as vendors, contractors, or nuclear facility review boards.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Nuclear Engineers Keep abreast of developments and changes in the nuclear field by reading technical journals or by independent study and research. They might also Write operational instructions to be used in nuclear plant operation or nuclear fuel or waste handling and disposal.

In addition, they Recommend preventive measures to be taken in the handling of nuclear technology, based on data obtained from operations monitoring or from evaluation of test results.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them Develop or contribute to the development of plans to remediate or restore environments affected by nuclear radiation, such as waste disposal sites.

To some Nuclear Engineers, it is also their responsibility to Conduct environmental studies related to topics such as nuclear power generation, nuclear waste disposal, or nuclear weapon deployment.


Working life

Working hours

More than 40 hours per week

Working schedule

Regular schedule like a 9 to 5

In a typical work week as a Nuclear Engineer, you can expect to work more than 40 hours per week.

Do Nuclear Engineers work in an office-style work environment?

Every day
88%


Once a week
8%


Do Nuclear Engineers work outdoors?

Once a year
35%


Never
31%



Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Thinkers and The Builders

People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally..

They also like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

You can read more about these career personality types here.



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Related to Nuclear Engineers Job Description

Nuclear Engineers job description, what do Nuclear Engineers do, typical day for Nuclear Engineers, what is it like to work as a Nuclear Engineer, how many hours do Nuclear Engineers work, day to day work of a Nuclear Engineer

Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/OOH/architecture-and-engineering/nuclear-engineers.htm
http://www.ans.org/pi/matters/careers/
http://www.nuclearconnect.org/in-the-classroom/for-students/careers/faq-nuclear-engineering-degrees
http://hps.org/



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