Mechanical engineers design, manufacture, install and service mechanical components used in industry. Important industries that require the services of mechanical engineers are the manufacturing, power production, transport and medical industries.
Mechanical Engineer Typical Duties
- Improving manufacturing processes and planning to help manufacturing companies work more efficiently
- Implement the upgrading of mechanical components and systems in industry by researching and designing better alternatives
- Mechanical engineers are used also in pure researching roles to discover new methods and technologies for industries
Mechanical engineers work in various environments, from organised drawing offices to mining sites. The work varies and the engineer is expected to adapt and to make use of sound engineering principles to perform at a high standard.
People that love solving problems, mathematics and science will find mechanical engineering to be both exciting and a challenge.
Two paths can be taken to become a mechanical engineer
- You can go to university and obtain a bachelors degree in mechanical engineering which takes four years to complete.
- You can go to technikon and obtain a bachelors degree in mechanical technology which takes a total of four years to complete.
The difference in the two being that the university student will be labelled engineer and the technikon student a technologist. The university degree is also perceived to be of more value thus engineers are given higher profile jobs than technologists.
Mechanical Engineers can expect a salary between R120 000 and R500 000 per year.
Mechanical Technologists can expect a salary between R70 000 and R350 000 per year.
Top 5 Employers
- Arcelor Mittal
- BHP Billiton