Metallurgists research, control and develop processes that are used in extracting minerals from ore (rock) for refining metals.
To become a metallurgist you usually have to complete a degree in metallurgical or chemical engineering, or science with a major in metallurgy. 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 these areas. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements. 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.
Metallurgists may perform the following tasks:
Metallurgists work at mines, mineral processing sites, laboratories, research centres or offices. They usually work with other professionals such as mining or construction engineers, geologists, mineralogists, technicians and tradespeople.
Metallurgists are employed in production, research and technical sales in companies that mine and process metals, as well as in related research organisations such as the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). They are also employed by government departments. Some metallurgists find employment in educational institutions, as well as in marketing and technical sales for companies dealing in metal products and coated products. After several years of experience, metallurgists may move into middle or senior-level management positions. Others form their own companies that provide advice to companies and firms involved in metal production. Demand for metallurgists is dependent on the level of activity in the mining, metals and materials manufacturing industries.