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Petrochemical Engineer Jobs

In the oil and natural gas industry, the Petrochemical Engineer is the celebrity. It's practically impossible to imagine a world without the many things that are derived from the oil brought up out of the ground. Petrochemical products are created from oil and natural gas and cover a very wide range of products and materials. Using scientific and mathematical principles and processes, petrochemical engineers develop ways to break down the complex organic molecules in the oil to produce much simpler and basic components. Once these more basic substances are separated and recombined again to form many useful products including lubricating oils, all plastics, polymers, synthetic rubber compounds and synthetic fibers.

The world owes a great deal to the innovations of these engineers.

Without their help, many of the products we use in our lives everyday simply wouldn't exist. Dishwasher-safe containers that withstand high heat, ropes and even carpet fibers are all made from substances derived from crude oil. Usually working as part of a team of scientists, technicians and other engineers, the petrochemical engineer is basically an alchemist who transforms crude oil matter into useful products.

If you're still in high school, you should take as many math and chemistry courses as you can. Most university petrochemical engineering programs will require a high number of math and chemistry credits as prerequisites for this course. You'll need a bachelor's degree in petrochemical engineering and become registered as a professional engineer within an engineering association before you can get a job in the oil industry. Petrochemical Engineers can often move up to production management positions and supervise junior engineers. The entry-level salary for a petrochemical engineer is $51,000 to $126,000 with an average annual salary being $85,000.

The work of a petrochemical engineer usually takes place in laboratories or specialized centers but in the oil and natural gas industry they are often sent to the refineries or oilfields to supervise processes or experiments on site. Petrochemical engineers are required to constantly update their specialized skills in order to keep up with technological advances in the industry.

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