Science, Technology & Environment

Materials Technician

Materials technicians test the functionality and performance of new and existing materials used in the manufacture of all types of products.

  • Entry-level education

    VET qualification

  • Job outlook

    1 2 3 4 5

What does a Materials Technician do?

Materials technicians test the functionality and performance of new and existing materials used in the manufacture of all types of products.

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Work activities

As a materials technician, you would:

  • test materials for functionality such as tension and strength under pressure
  • test the composition and properties of materials
  • analyse data gathered from testing
  • write reports for materials engineers
  • help produce cost estimates for the production of new materials and material processes
  • assess the safety of products and possible environmental impacts.

Some materials technicians work in the mining industry, where they test minerals and the processes that refine metals and minerals. In mining and minerals processing, you might be known as a metallurgical technician.

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Key skills and interests

To become a materials technician, you would need:

  • an understanding of manufacturing processes
  • scientific, numerical and technical skills
  • strong analytical and problem-solving skills
  • patience and persistence
  • knowledge of the properties of materials
  • a good understanding of health and safety issues
  • good IT skills
  • good communication skills.
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Working hours and conditions

Working Hours

As a materials technicians, you would usually work a standard number of hours, Monday to Friday, with occasional evenings and weekends to meet deadlines.

Conditions

You could be based in an office, a laboratory or in a manufacturing environment. You may have to travel to visit manufacturers and clients. For some jobs, you may need to wear protective clothing, such as gloves and eye protection.

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How to become an Materials Technician?

Entry Level Education

To become a materials technician, you would usually have to complete a VET qualification, such as a diploma in manufacturing technology, chemistry, or extractive metallurgy. To get into these courses, you would generally require a senior secondary school certificate or equivalent. English, maths, chemistry and physics would be appropriate subjects to study prior to university.

You may also become a materials technician through completing a degree in science or engineering at university with a major in materials science or materials engineering.

Graduates may be eligible for membership of Materials Australia.

www.materialsaustralia.com.au/

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Job outlook

  • 1 2 3 4 5

Employment of materials technician is projected to show little or no change.

The decline of manufacturing across a broad range of industries in Australia is leading to fewer opportunities for materials technicians. Employment opportunities are likely to be best in growth industries such as healthcare, medical devices, and industries where nanotechnology is growing in application.

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