Mechanical engineers plan, design and oversee the development, installation, operation and maintenance of machinery. They conduct research to solve practical engineering problems and improve efficiency.
To become a mechanical engineer you usually have to complete a degree in engineering at university with a major in mechanical engineering. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. Prerequisite subjects, or assumed knowledge, in one or more of English, mathematics, chemistry and physics are normally required. Most universities in Australia offer degrees in engineering with a major in mechanical engineering. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study. Contact the institutions you are interested in for more information. For full details, refer to the entries on the website at www.goodcareersguide.com.au or university handbooks.
Mechanical engineers may perform the following tasks:
Mechanical engineers often work closely with other professionals (such as with architects in designing air conditioning plants), at times pooling expertise on particular projects. Mechanical engineers may work in production plants, in offices and outdoors when involved in construction projects.
Mechanical engineers are involved in a wide range of industries, including aviation, power generation, manufacturing, refrigeration and air conditioning, transportation and mechanical handling. They may specialise in areas such as research and development, engineering design, production, plant and maintenance. Mechanical engineers work in private engineering firms and in the building, mining, construction, power, manufacturing and processing industries. Universities and federal, state, territory and local government agencies also offer opportunities for employment. In addition, some mechanical engineers find employment with consultancy firms, while others are self-employed as consultants or contractors. Job opportunities depend on activity in the minerals, manufacturing and construction industries.
A manufacturing systems engineer designs and improves systems and equipment that complete tasks accurately and change raw materials into products with minimal wastage of time, materials and energy.