Materials Scientists

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Also known as:
Materials Scientist, Metal Alloy Scientist, Plastics Scientist

SNAPSHOT
Research and study the structures and chemical properties of various natural and synthetic or composite materials, including metals, alloys, rubber, ceramics, semiconductors, polymers, and glass. Determine ways to strengthen or combine materials or develop new materials with new or specific properties for use in a variety of products and applications. Includes glass scientists, ceramic scientists, metallurgical scientists, and polymer scientists.
Leadership
HIGH
Critical decision making
MED
Level of responsibilities
HIGH
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
LOW
Dealing and handling conflict
LOW
Competition for this position
HIGH
Communication with others
HIGH
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
HIGH
Comfort of the work setting
HIGH
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
LOW
Exposure to job hazards
LOW
Physical demands
LOW
Daily tasks

Visit suppliers of materials or users of products to gather specific information.

Test material samples for tolerance under tension, compression, and shear to determine the cause of metal failures.

Perform experiments and computer modeling to study the nature, structure, and physical and chemical properties of metals and their alloys, and their responses to applied forces.

Supervise and monitor production processes to ensure efficient use of equipment, timely changes to specifications, and project completion within time frame and budget.

Test metals to determine conformance to specifications of mechanical strength, strength-weight ratio, ductility, magnetic and electrical properties, and resistance to abrasion, corrosion, heat, and cold.

Prepare reports, manuscripts, proposals, and technical manuals for use by other scientists and requestors, such as sponsors and customers.

Write research papers for publication in scientific journals.

Devise testing methods to evaluate the effects of various conditions on particular materials.

Recommend materials for reliable performance in various environments.

Plan laboratory experiments to confirm feasibility of processes and techniques used in the production of materials with special characteristics.

Determine ways to strengthen or combine materials or develop new materials with new or specific properties for use in a variety of products and applications.

MAIN ACTIVITIES
Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
Analyzing Data or Information Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Interacting With Computers Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Processing Information Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
Thinking Creatively Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
AREAS OF KNOWLEDGE
Engineering and Technology Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Chemistry Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
Mathematics Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Physics Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Computers and Electronics Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Design Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Production and Processing Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
TOP SKILLS
Reading Comprehension Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Science Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Writing Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Active Learning Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Complex Problem Solving Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.