Chemical process operators tend or control machinery to create changes or reactions in chemicals during the processing of raw materials into industrial or consumer products, such as detergents, soap, emulsifiers, cosmetics, paints, fertilizers, acids, bleaching agents and lubricant.
Operating chemical equipment includes adjusting control to regulate temperature, pressure, and time of prescribed reaction, according to knowledge of equipment and processes. Operators must also draw samples of the product at specified stages, perform standard tests or send samples to a laboratory for analyses. This may include observing color and consistency of the product and comparing these observations to instrument readings and laboratory and standard test results. Some operators in management positions may also supervise and assign tasks to helpers.
Job Outlook and Growth Potential:
Employment of chemical process operators is expected to grow more slowly than the average for all occupations through the year 2006.
Most chemical process operators are employed in the manufacturing industry. Most openings in this field will be to relpace chemical process operators who retire, or leave the labor force for other reasons.
Wages and Earnings Potential:
Chemical process operators make between 11.89 to $21.52 per hour