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Sample Job Descriptions & Salaries

These descriptions of typical jobs in the nuclear energy industry range from entry-level positions to mid-career opportunities for experienced workers, as well as opportunities for those entering the civilian work force following military service. For information on salaries, see the individual job descriptions.

The Industry Needs Engineers, Technicians and More

Chemistry Technician

A chemistry technician measures and records plant chemistry and radioactivity levels, and operates chemical and radiochemical instrumentation and equipment.

Electrical Technician

An electrical technician’s duties consist of the maintenance and repair of highly complex electrical/electronic equipment required for a nuclear plant. Responsibilities include troubleshooting, testing and inspecting in a highly skilled manner.

Entry-level Engineer

An entry-level plant engineer at a nuclear power plant has a range of responsibilities. Duties include helping to develop complex troubleshooting plans to support plant operations. The engineer also monitors, assesses and improves the performance and reliability of plant systems and components.

Experienced Engineer

An experienced or senior engineer at a nuclear power plant plans and coordinates programs and large-scale engineering projects or several medium projects while acting as a technical specialist for a specific engineering field. Duties include carrying out advanced engineering and technical tasks, and performing independent research, reviews, studies and analyses in support of technical projects.

Instrumentation and Control (I&C) Technician

An I&C technician is responsible for calibrating, testing, troubleshooting, reworking, modifying and inspecting nuclear plant instrumentation and control components and systems.

Mechanical Technician

A mechanical technician performs preventive, corrective and special maintenance on systems, components and structural facilities to ensure the reliability of a nuclear power plant.

Non-licensed Operator

A non-licensed operator supports the reactor operators and senior reactor operators. Duties include opening and closing valves, electrical breakers and other devices as well as directly monitoring plant equipment performance. Operators work in shifts.

Radiation Protection Technician

Radiation protection technicians measure and record radiation levels; in addition, they service and calibrate radiation protection instruments and equipment. They play a vital role in ensuring the safety of employees working in radiation areas, as well as the facility’s compliance with radiation requirements.

Reactor Operator

A reactor operator, licensed by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, is responsible for operating a reactor’s controls in cooperation with the remainder of the shift team. The reactor operator moves control rods, starts and stops equipment, implements operations procedures, conducts surveillance tests and records data in logs. Operators work in shifts.

Senior Reactor Operator

A senior reactor operation is licensed to operate a nuclear power plant in accordance with all regulations. Duties include operating the mechanical, electrical and reactor systems from the plant control room in a safe and efficient manner to ensure maximum electrical generation in compliance with regulations.