Power generation plant operators control and operate a range of machinery and instruments used in the electricity supply industry (ESI) for generating electric power. This may involve mechanical, electrical or chemical processes.
Personal requirements for a Power Generation Plant Operator
- Logical and thorough approach to work
- Able to follow procedures and committed to safe work practices
- Good at mechanical and/or electrical activities
- Able to accept responsibility and make decisions.
Duties & Tasks of a Power Generation Plant Operator
Power generation plant operators may perform the following tasks:
- Control the flow of fuel to boilers and make sure that the machinery is working properly
- Control the flow of water in hydroelectric power stations and ensure that the machinery is working correctly
- Operate control instruments to switch off lines or equipment and to connect alternative circuits
- Check instruments and switchboards to make sure that all systems are working efficiently to detect line disturbances and to check the flow of power
- Find faults and perform basic repairs in mechanical, electrical and process control equipment and coordinate specialist repairs
- Shut down or start up boilers or turbines to decrease or increase power output
- Operate power switches for safety of crews and to avoid interruptions during repairs
- Undertake safe work procedures to isolate plant machinery and equipment for maintenance and repair
- Compile records and reports on equipment performance, instrument readings and switching operations
- Clean, lubricate and repair equipment
- Control processes and equipment associated with inputs for power generation such as fuel, chemicals and water
- Control processes and equipment associated with management of by-products to minimise their environmental impact
- Respond to emergencies such as fire and environmental hazards.
Working conditions for a Power Generation Plant Operator
They work in control rooms, operating a controlling console, and also out in the plant. Shiftwork is required.
Power generation plant operators may specialise as hydroelectric power station operators or power generation turbine room operators.