dcsimg



Schools in the USA
Back to Career Search     

Mineralogy Technician


Description

Minerals are the basic building blocks of all rocks. They are naturally occurring inorganic substances formed with definite chemical composition and properties. Moonstone, sulfur, dolomite, salt gypsum, diamonds . . . these are just a few different examples of mineral deposits that mineralogy technicians test and extract. Mineralogy technicians assist mineralogists in the study of the chemical makeup and interactions of naturally occurring, inorganic minerals in rock formations. They provide technical support in the field of mineralogy, identifying and classifying minerals and precious stones according to their mode of origin, composition and structure, study the properties of minerals and develop industrial and environmental uses.

Since all of the solid parts of the universe are composed of minerals, this career is truly fundamental in terms of long-range importance to the environment, economy and geology-related industries. For example, understanding the mineral composition of rocks tells oil companies where to drill for oil, which enables scientists to put together broad based theories about the way the earth is changing and thereby helps environmental management companies decide how to dispose of a toxic or hazardous substance.

Mineralogy technicians might specialize in one of two broad areas of mineralogy: high and low temperature geochemistry. High temperature, or high pressure geochemistry studies of the formation of minerals and rocks deep in the crust or in volcanoes. Low temperature geochemistry studies the behavior of minerals reacting under conditions near the surface of the earth. Both exploration methods help these technicians search for buried ore deposits by detecting trace amounts of metals and minerals in water, plant, soil, sediment and rock samples. Mineralogy technicians help scientists and engineers identify where minerals are located by analyzing trace quantities of chemicals.

Many mineralogy technicians work in the mining industry, and assist in mine and cave mineral exploration. They may supervise the extraction of ores from underground or surface mines. They might also come up with methods for the responsible, safe, economical and environmentally sound operation of mines. Mineralogy technicians may also troubleshoot any potential hazards, which may involve making maps for mines.

Mineralogy technicians frequently specialize in one particular mineral or metal, such as coal or silver. These specialists are experts within their area of mineralogy and build themselves a reputation for a particular mineral within the mineralogy and mine geology field.
 
View Schools for this Career: 
         Related Careers
arrow Assayer
arrow Blaster
arrow Gem Cutter
arrow [ view all related careers ]



Program Spotlight
Matching School Ad
University of California, Riverside

The University of California, Riverside
Transforming Engineers into Leaders

If you’re seeking to elevate your technical expertise and take on leadership roles in today’s global workplace, the UC Riverside online Master of Science in Engineering can deliver the highly calibrated balance of scientific and business knowledge to help you reach your goals.

Programs Offered:
  • M.S. in Engineering, Materials at the Nanoscale Specialization
  • M.S. in Engineering, Data Science Specialization
  • M.S. in Engineering, Mechanical Engineering Specialization

 

 



  Interests and Skills  
Mineralogy technicians must have excellent communication and interpersonal skills because they constantly deal with engineers and technologists. They should have a natural aptitude for mathematics and science and be able to visualize three-dimensional objects from two-dimensional drawings, which is not an easy task. Mineralogy technicians should be able to make quick, logical decisions, adapt from an office environment to a laboratory or mine site and be able to supervise and lead others.
 

  Typical Tasks  
  • Participate in prospecting field trips, exploratory drilling or underground mineral survey programs
  • Assist in research and analysis of the quantity and distribution of minerals in rocks
  • Help classify and identify minerals to assess depositional environments and geological age
  • Explore mining areas to determine the structure and the types of minerals that exist
  • Operate and maintain survey instruments and equipment
  • Collect and analyze rock samples in mineralogical surveys
  • Work under the direction of scientists and engineers about mineral and rock projects
  • Write reports, prepare notes and sketches about the findings from research and surveying
  • Assist in the preparation of rock and mineral samples and in conducting laboratory tests
  • Carry out a limited range of other technical functions in support of mineralogists
  • Mineralogy technicians spend the majority of their working time in the field, assisting in data collection. Some time is spent in the lab, but this is a field for people who like to work outdoors. Travel can be quite extensive and foreign, particularly since much of the new mineral exploration work is happening overseas. Those working for the government will generally work standard hours, however those in private companies and in environmental management will find themselves working long hours, which may include weekend emergency work.

  Workplaces, Employers and Industries  
  • Mineralogy technicians work in both the public and private sectors. They are employed by mineral and mining companies, geochemical companies, petroleum and oil companies, and geology, geophysics and engineering consulting firms. In the public sector they work for all levels of the government and also teach at high schools and colleges.

  Long Term Career Potential  
Opportunities for advancement as a mineralogy technician include becoming a team leader, supervisor or manager in the mineralogy field. With further education, they can become mineralogy technologists, engineers and even teach at the high school or vocational school level.
 

  Educational Paths  
Mineralogy technicians usually require completion of a one- or two-year college program in mineralogy or mineral engineering technology. Certification in mineral technology or in a related field is available through associations of technicians and may be required by some employers. Usually, a two-year period of supervised work experience is required before one can become a certified mineralogy technician.
 

Sources:
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, 2002, http://www.bls.gov/oes/2002/oes_nat.htm

Featured Schools

Matching School Ads
University of California, Riverside

The University of California, Riverside
Transforming Engineers into Leaders

If you’re seeking to elevate your technical expertise and take on leadership roles in today’s global workplace, the UC Riverside online Master of Science in Engineering can deliver the highly calibrated balance of scientific and business knowledge to help you reach your goals.

Programs Offered:
  • M.S. in Engineering, Materials at the Nanoscale Specialization
  • M.S. in Engineering, Data Science Specialization
  • M.S. in Engineering, Mechanical Engineering Specialization

 
Villanova University - College of Engineering

The College of Engineering at Villanova University offers flexible, part-time, online and on campus graduate program options to meet your demanding schedule.

Programs Offered:
  • Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

 
San Joaquin Valley College

San Joaquin Valley College - A Private Junior College.

Programs Offered:
  • Certificate - Industrial Maintenance Technician
  • Degree - Industrial Maintenance Technician

 
Liberty University

Liberty University provides a world-class education with a solid Christian foundation, equipping men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for success in every aspect of life.

Programs Offered:
  • BS in Aeronautics

 
Brightwood College

About Brightwood College

Brightwood College offers accelerated programs that combine flexible schedules and professional instruction to create a rewarding learning experience for individuals focused on gaining the skills for specific careers. Brightwood College is owned and operated by Education Corporation of America.

Programs Offered:
  • Electrical Technician

 
Institute of Technology

You can get started on a new career with Institute of Technology.

For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit our website at www.iot.edu/disclosure

Programs Offered:
  • Industrial Maintenance and Automated Technology

 
Norwich University - Online
Earn your Master's degree online from Norwich University.
Programs Offered:
  • Master of Civil Engineering Online

 
Milan Institute
Prepare for an exciting new career at the Milan Institute.
Programs Offered:
  • Electrician
  • Oil and Gas Instrumentation Technician

 
Matching School Ads
  Universities and Colleges
Clarkson UniversityColorado School of MinesDalhousie University
Oral Roberts UniversityPenn State HarrisburgTemple University
The University of HoustonThompson Rivers UniversityUNB Saint John
University of AlabamaUniversity of ArkansasUniversity of British Columbia
University of IowaUniversity of New BrunswickUniversity of Oregon
University of OttawaYork University
Agriculture and Bio-resources | Allied Health and Health Sciences | Applied Business Technology | Architecture
Business Administration | Computer Science | Cosmetology and Esthetics | Culinary, Travel &Hospitality | Dance 
Engineering Technology & Applied Technology |Engineering | Film | Fine Arts and Design | Humanities and Liberal ArtsJustice and Security
Music
| Natural and Applied Sciences | Naturopathic and Holistic MedicineNursingPublic Administration & PolicyReligious and Theological Studies
Sport Sciences and Physical Education | Teacher Education | Theatre
Articles | College News | Videos | Feedback | Career Search
Home | About Us | Contact Us | Faq | Terms of Use | Policy Statement | Site Map | Cities Site Map

Copyright 2003- 2016 QuinStreet, Inc. All Rights Reserved.