Colour Technologist

A colour technologist uses the science and technology of colour application and its subsequent performance. They are responsible for developing and producing dyes and pigments for manufacturing areas such as textiles, paints and inks for printers. Colour technologists can be involved in all stages of the production process, from design to testing and marketing. Work may include developing new dyes and pigments to provide specified colours, monitoring colour reliability during production, testing the colourfastness and stability of dyes and pigments under simulated conditions over typical life-spans and refining processes for the production of dyes and pigments to save costs and minimise environmental impact.

Attributes: creative, organised, attention to detail

Systems Engineer

Systems engineers design and create systems to meet specific needs by combining and integrating people, components and processes into a whole system and ensuring each of those components work correctly. Systems are used in industrial processes to increase output, but a toilet, a refrigerator, an air conditioner, an automatic iron, a car and even the human body are all systems. Larger systems include moveable bridges, manufacturing plants or the International Space Station.

Attributes: collaborative, imaginative, resilient

Design Engineer

Design engineers create the initial blueprints and schematics for various structures, systems, machines, or equipment. Design engineers research using mathematical modelling to work through new developments and innovations. They turn research ideas into technical plans for prototypes using computer-aided design and computer-assisted engineering. They collect and analyse data from prototype testing, modifying designs ahead of manufacture or installation. Designer engineers are employed in many different industries including research and development companies, construction firms and product manufacturing plants.

Attributes: collaborative, open-minded, creative

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Polymer Scientist

Polymer scientists use chemical polymers to build useful and unique materials such as Kevlar, Teflon, fiberglass, polyester and nylon. Polymers are long strings of several molecules in a repeating pattern. Polymer scientists can manipulate a polymer’s properties depending on what types of molecules they use and how they’re connected. To perform these kinds of tasks, scientists use knowledge of organic chemistry, structural patterns and sometimes computer modeling programs to help plan the polymer synthesis. Some polymer scientists work on creating new polymer materials and others develop existing polymer designs.

Attributes: hard-working, self-motivated, committed

Patent Examiner

Patent examiners inspect the technical and legal aspects of an invention in a patent application. Patent examiners get to see the latest developments in technology. They look for any evidence that the invention already exists then work out how it works, what it does, and what the new and inventive aspect of the invention is by using their technical expertise. Patent examiners then use this information to search through specialised databases. They then analyse the patent application and identify any legal issues that may be wrong with the application. They will then continue to work with the applicant to bring their application to a state where it meets all the legal requirements and a patent may be granted.

Attributes: organised, passionate, resilient


Metallurgists deal with extracting and processing metals. They work with metals such as steel, aluminium, iron, and copper and often work with alloys (metals that are mixed with each other or other elements) to create materials with specific desirable properties. Metallurgists can work in a number of areas including civil engineering, aircraft manufacture, automotive engineering and the defence industry. They usually specialise as chemical metallurgists, extracting metals from ore, physical metallurgists, studying how metals behave or process metallurgists, designing metal parts.

Attributes: observant, patient, curious

Product/Process Development Scientist

Product and process development scientists improve the efficiency and profitability of manufactured products. Process development scientists optimise the performance of manufacturing systems. They identify and develop new processes for product manufacture and implement process controls to ensure the products are of a high quality. Product development scientists work with research scientists to develop new ideas and scientific discoveries to be used in the manufacture of new products. They also develop and improve existing products.

Attributes: organised, imaginative, open-minded

Materials Scientist

Materials scientists study the structures and chemical properties of natural, synthetic or composite materials, including glass, metals, rubber, ceramics, alloys, semiconductors and polymers. They focus on the production and design aspect of chemical physics and determine ways to strengthen or combine materials or develop new materials with new or specific properties for use in a variety of products and applications.

Attributes: curious, self-motivated, passionate

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Materials Engineer

Materials engineers research materials used in industry, like carbon fibre reinforced plastic, polymers, ceramics or alloys, and test their behaviours under different conditions. Materials engineers understand the properties and behaviours of different substances, from raw materials to finished products and use non-destructive testing methods to investigate materials, like electrical conductivity, or tolerance to heat or corrosion. Materials engineers combine or modify materials in different ways to improve the performance, durability and cost-effectiveness of processes and products.

The Primary Science Teaching Trust has a downloadable slideshow (PDF) about Dr Parvez Alam who is a materials, modelling and design lecturer and a downloadable slideshow (PDF) about corrosion engineer, Gunay Shamilova. It’s part of their resource A Scientist Just Like Me.

Attributes: imaginative, committed, patient


Geologists work to understand the history of our planet so they can understand Earth’s history and can predict how events and processes of the past might influence the future. Geologists seek to understand the processes of landslides, earthquakes, floods, and volcanic eruptions well enough to avoid building important structures where they might be damaged. They prepare maps of areas that have flooded in the past in order to prepare maps of areas that might be flooded in the future. Geologists locate rocks that contain important metals, plan the mines that produce them and the methods used to remove the metals from the rocks. They also locate and produce oil, natural gas, and groundwater. Geologists study past climates of Earth and how they have changed across time. This provides an understanding of how our current climate is changing and what the results might be. They also study the age of rocks, attempting to piece together a chronology of events for the formation of our land masses and changes over time.

Attributes: observant, curious, creative

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