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Career as Chemical Engineer

Last Updated On 10 Aug, 2018

How to Become a Chemical Engineer

About Chemical Engineer

Chemical engineering is one of the emerging careers that deal with designing and supervision of chemical reactions in an industry for the purpose of energy production or human development. In the current scenario, chemical engineering is significant as there is a global shift towards renewable resources such as hydroelectric and solar. These fields require innovation and development to make sure that these resources can meet our energy needs. The major responsibility of the chemical engineers is to apply the principles of physics, chemistry, mathematics and biology to solve the problems that involve the production or use of chemicals, drugs, food and many other products. The design equipment and processes for large-scale manufacturing and direct facility operations.

Eligibility to become Chemical Engineer

  • For taking up Bachelor’s degree courses in Chemical Engineering/ Chemistry, students must have passed Class 12 in science stream.

  • For a master’s course, Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry/ Chemical Engineering or associated field is mandatory.

  • For taking up research in the field of chemistry/ chemistry, students must have a Master’s degree in chemistry/ chemical engineering or associated fields.

  • Students must clear entrance exam like JEE Main/ JEE Advanced, state-level engineering entrance exams, GATE etc. for the admission to Chemical Engineering course.

  • For B.Sc course in Chemistry, there will be no entrance test in most of the colleges in India.

Types of Job Roles Chemical Engineer

Chemical Engineers are required for diverse jobs. The following are some of the job profiles that chemical engineers can take up after obtaining the necessary skills.

  • Analytical Chemist: An analytical chemist is a scientist who studies and tests the chemical compositions and behaviours of varied substances.

  • Energy Manager: An energy manager monitors the usage of energy across the industry or organisation. He/ She also undertake energy audits.

  • Environmental Engineer: These engineers use the principles of biology, chemistry, soil science and engineering to develop solutions to environmental problems. They also involved in different initiatives to improve recycling, public health, waste disposal and water & air pollution control.

  • Manufacturing Engineer: the major responsibility of manufacturing engineer is to evaluate manufacturing processes by designing and conducting research programmes. They also apply their knowledge of various activities involved in the manufacturing process.

  • Materials Engineer: These engineers specialise in metals, ceramics or plastics. They also develop composite materials and study the atomic structure of materials.

  • Mining Engineer: Mining engineers play a vital role in extracting the underground resources such as minerals, oil, gas and metals.

  • Production Manager: The major responsibility of the production managers is to assess project and resource requirements. They also plan and organise production schedules.

  • Lecturer: Chemical engineers can also become lectures in universities and colleges after attaining the necessary qualifications.

Employment Sector/Industry for Chemical Engineer

Since chemical engineering covers a wide range of industrial sectors, the employment opportunities for chemical engineers are diverse. Any company that is involved in the conversion of raw materials into a product require chemical engineers. Chemical engineers can find major employment opportunities in

  • Oil refineries,

  • Gas and oil extraction,

  • Power generation industries,

  • Pharmaceuticals,

  • Fine and heavy chemical industries,

  •  Agrochemical industries

  • Fibres and Polymer Industries

  • Beverage Industries

  • Universities, Colleges and Schools

Top Recruiting Agencies for Chemical Engineers

Some of the top companies and industries require skilled chemical engineers for various positions. The list of top recruiting companies for chemical engineers can be checked below.

  • Reliance Industries

  • Essar Oil Limited

  • Deepak Fertilisers and Petrochemicals

  • Arofine Polymers

  • Reliance Petroleum Limited

  • Colour-Chem Ltd

  • Gujarat Gas Company Limited

  • Gujarat Alkalies & Chemicals Ltd

  • Godavari Fertilisers & Chemicals

  • L & T

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Pay Scale/Salary of Chemical Engineer

Chemical engineers in diverse sectors earn a satisfactory salary. Most companies pay more for highly skilled and experienced chemical engineers and researchers. The average salary structure of chemical engineers is detailed below.

Job Profile

Starting Salary per annum (in INR)

Mid Level Salary per annum (in INR)

Senior Level Salary per annum (In INR)

Analytical Chemist

Rs. 2,00,000

Rs. 3,00,000

Rs. 4,00,000

Energy Manager

Rs. 2,00,000

Rs. 4,00,000

Rs. 6,00,000

Environmental Engineer

Rs. 2,00,000

Rs. 3,67,000

Rs. 4,50,000

Manufacturing Engineer

Rs. 2,00,000

Rs. 4,68,000

Rs. 6,00,000

Materials Engineer

Rs. 2,00,000

Rs. 3,74,000

Rs. 5,00,000

Note: The above figures are an estimate and may vary from individual to individual and company to company.

Books & Study Material to Become Chemical Engineer

Students can rely on the following books to prepare for competitive exams and enhance knowledge in the field of chemical engineering.

  • Unit Operations of Chemical Engineering by Warren L McCabe

  • Elements of Chemical Reaction Engineering by H Scott Fogler

  • Introduction to Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics by Hedrick C Van Ness

  • Elementary Principles of Chemical Processes by Richard M Felder

  • Chemical Reaction Engineering by Octave Levenspiel

  • Introduction to Chemical Engineering by WL Badger

Pros of becoming a Chemical Engineer

  • Apart from annual salary, chemical engineers are provided with various health benefits, retirement pension etc.

  • Chemical engineers are capable of contributing meaningful advancements to society.

Cons of becoming a Chemical Engineer

  • Hazardous working conditions

  • Lack of free time

Career path for Chemical Engineer

For entry-level positions in chemical engineering, one must possess a Bachelor’s degree in the respective field. Students must have a strong background in Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Mathematics. A master’s degree in chemical engineering or chemistry will open up new avenues in research and higher posts.

Subjects Combination: Students must have studied Physics, Biology/ Mathematics and Chemistry as the major subjects in Class 12.

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FAQs about Chemical Engineer

Are chemical engineers offered good opportunities?

Yes, chemical engineers are offered excellent opportunities and the salary offered to them is also quite attractive.

Is Chemical Engineering a satisfying career option?

Majority of the chemical engineers are quite satisfied with their jobs and salaries.

Are chemical engineering jobs among the top 10 highest paid engineering jobs in India?

Yes, the chemical engineering jobs are among the top 10 highest paying engineering jobs in India.

Is finding a job for a chemical engineer an easy task?

Finding a job for a chemical engineer is both as hard and as easy it is for other engineers where the efforts of a candidate and how he/she logically tackles the work of finding a job matters.

Is chemical engineering branch the king of engineering?

No, chemical engineering branch is not the king of engineering. The king of engineering is the mechanical branch.

What is the average salary of a chemical engineer?

The average salary of a chemical engineer lies in the range of INR 2 LPA and INR 6 LPA.

How many years of study is required to become a chemical engineer?

Typically, one can call himself/herself a chemical engineer after completing a four-year bachelor’s degree study.

Who is the current richest engineer in the world?

Jeff Bezos is the current richest engineer in the world who has a current fortune worth of 112 Billion USD.

What is the expected demand growth of chemical engineers in the coming decade?

The demand for chemical engineers in the coming decade is expected to grow by 6%.

Who is the founding father of chemical engineering discipline?

George Edward Davis is the founding father of chemical engineering discipline.

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