What Do Physicists Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

Stan T.Career, Job Description2 Comments

Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life.

Job Description

Physicists conduct research into physical phenomena, develop theories on the basis of observation and experiments, and devise methods to apply physical laws and theories. They also perform complex calculations as part of the analysis and evaluation of data, using computers.

Other tasks include:

  • Direct testing and monitoring of contamination of radioactive equipment, and recording of personnel and plant area radiation exposure data.
  • Describe and express observations and conclusions in mathematical terms.
  • Analyze data from research conducted to detect and measure physical phenomena.
  • Observe the structure and properties of matter, and the transformation and propagation of energy, using equipment such as masers, lasers, and telescopes to explore and identify the basic principles governing these phenomena.
  • Develop theories and laws on the basis of observation and experiments, and apply these theories and laws to problems in areas such as nuclear energy, optics, and aerospace technology.
  • Teach physics to students.

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

Job satisfaction

77%

How meaningful is this job

79%


77% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 79% 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, Physicists direct testing and monitoring of contamination of radioactive equipment, and recording of personnel and plant area radiation exposure data. They develop theories and laws on the basis of observation and experiments, and apply these theories and laws to problems in areas such as nuclear energy, optics, and aerospace technology.

  • Develop manufacturing, assembly, and fabrication processes of lasers, masers, infrared, and other light-emitting and light-sensitive devices.
  • Analyze data from research conducted to detect and measure physical phenomena.
  • Perform complex calculations as part of the analysis and evaluation of data, using computers.
  • Conduct research pertaining to potential environmental impacts of atomic energy-related industrial development to determine licensing qualifications.
  • Observe the structure and properties of matter, and the transformation and propagation of energy, using equipment such as masers, lasers, and telescopes to explore and identify the basic principles governing these phenomena.

We asked some Physicists 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?56% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job?32% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job?72% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job?20% 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?6% said yes

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Physicists also conduct application evaluations and analyze results to determine commercial, industrial, scientific, medical, military, or other uses for electro-optical devices. They may also collaborate with other scientists in the design, development, and testing of experimental, industrial, or medical equipment, instrumentation, and procedures.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Physicists Design computer simulations to model physical data so that it can be better understood. They might also Teach physics to students.

In addition, they Observe the structure and properties of matter, and the transformation and propagation of energy, using equipment such as masers, lasers, and telescopes to explore and identify the basic principles governing these phenomena.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them Develop theories and laws on the basis of observation and experiments, and apply these theories and laws to problems in areas such as nuclear energy, optics, and aerospace technology.

To some Physicists, it is also their responsibility to Describe and express observations and conclusions in mathematical terms.


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 Physicist, you can expect to work more than 40 hours per week.

Do Physicists work in an office-style work environment?

Every day
79%


Once a week
13%


Do Physicists work outdoors?

Never
77%


Once a year
21%



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.




Learn more about Physicists

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Related to Physicists Job Description

Physicists job description, what do Physicists do, typical day for Physicists, what is it like to work as a Physicist, how many hours do Physicists work, day to day work of a Physicist

Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/OOH/life-physical-and-social-science/physicists-and-astronomers.htm
http://aas.org/
http://www.compadre.org/careers/
http://www.aip.org/


2 Comments on “What Do Physicists Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)”

  1. Jeff Carbine

    Basically, most of the inventions and progress of the world today came from the subject of physics. In addition to physicists having jobs as teachers and receiving grants, do very many physicists get hired in-house for companies? For instance, would a physicist work at 3M and help with research and development?

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