NOC 9241 – Power engineers and power systems operators

Index

Intro

Power engineers operate and maintain reactors, turbines, boilers, generators, stationary engines and auxiliary equipment to generate electrical power and to provide heat, light, refrigeration and other utility services for commercial, industrial and institutional buildings and other work sites. Power systems operators monitor and operate switchboards and related equipment in electrical control centres to control the distribution of electrical power in transmission networks. They are employed by power generation plants, electrical power utilities, manufacturing plants, hospitals, universities and government and commercial establishments.

Main Duties

Power engineers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Operate automated or computerized control systems, stationary engines and auxiliary equipment such as reactors, boilers, turbines, generators, pumps, compressors, pollution control devices and other equipment to generate electrical power and to provide light, heat, ventilation and refrigeration for buildings, industrial plants and other work sites
  • Start up and shut down power plant equipment, control switching operations, regulate water levels and communicate with systems operators to regulate and co-ordinate transmission loads, frequency and line voltages
  • Monitor and inspect plant equipment, computer terminals, switches, valves, gauges, alarms, meters and other instruments to measure temperature, pressure and fuel flow, to detect leaks or other equipment malfunctions and to ensure plant equipment is operating at maximum efficiency
  • Analyze and record instrument readings and equipment malfunctions
  • Troubleshoot and perform corrective action and minor repairs to prevent equipment or system failure
  • Clean and lubricate generators, turbines, pumps and compressors and perform other routine equipment maintenance duties using appropriate lubricants and hand, power and precision tools
  • Maintain a daily log of operation, maintenance and safety activities, and write reports on plant operation
  • May assist in the development of operation, maintenance and safety procedures.

Power systems operators perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Operate and monitor computerized switchboards and auxiliary equipment in electrical control centres to control the distribution and to regulate the flow of electrical power in the transmission network
  • Co-ordinate, schedule and direct generating station and substation power loads and line voltages to meet distribution demands during daily operations, system outages, repairs and importing or exporting of power
  • Monitor and visually inspect station instruments, meters and alarms to ensure transmission voltages and line loadings are within prescribed limits and to detect equipment failure, line disturbances and outages
  • Issue work and test permits to electrical and mechanical maintenance personnel, assist maintenance and technical personnel to locate and isolate system problems, and assist during routine system testing
  • Complete and maintain station records, logs and reports.

There is little mobility between nuclear power generation station operators and other classic or alternative power generation station operators.

Progression from lower to higher classes for stationary or power engineers is dependent on further training and experience.

Progression to supervisory positions is possible with experience.

Employment Requirements

  • Completion of secondary school is usually required.
  • Power engineers require a college training program in stationary or power engineering and several years of work experience in the field.
  • Power engineers require a provincial or territorial power engineering or stationary engineering certificate according to class.
  • Stationary engineer trade certification according to class (4th, 3rd, 2nd or 1st class) is compulsory in Nova Scotia and Quebec and available, but voluntary in New Brunswick.
  • Power systems operators require completion of a three- to five-year power system operator apprenticeship program
    or
    Over three years of work experience in the trade and some college or industry courses in electrical and electronic technology.
  • Trade certification is available, but voluntary for power system operators in Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • Control room operators at nuclear power plants require licensing from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.

All Titles

  • air compressor operator
  • air conditioning system operator
  • apprentice power dispatcher
  • apprentice power dispatcher – electrical power systems
  • apprentice power engineer
  • apprentice stationary engineer
  • area dispatch chief operator
  • area load centre dispatcher
  • automated substation operator – electrical power systems
  • auxiliary equipment operator
  • auxiliary plant operator
  • boiler operator
  • boilerhouse operator
  • building systems operator
  • building systems technician
  • central control room operator – electrical power systems
  • central-office power control room operator – electrical power systems
  • chief operator, area dispatch
  • chief operator, area dispatch – electrical power systems
  • control room operator – electrical power systems
  • control room operator, trainee – electrical power systems
  • conversion substation operator – electrical power systems
  • cooling system operator
  • diesel engine operator, stationary
  • diesel generating station operator – electrical power systems
  • diesel plant operator – electrical power systems
  • diesel station operator
  • distribution control operator
  • distribution control operator – electrical power systems
  • distribution system dispatcher apprentice – electrical power systems
  • distribution system operator
  • electrical power systems operator
  • electrical station operator
  • electrical station operator – electrical power systems
  • electrical station power distribution inspector
  • energy from waste plant operator
  • energy recovery incinerator plant operator
  • feeder switchboard apprentice operator – electrical power systems
  • feeder switchboard operator – electrical power systems
  • fifth-class stationary engineer
  • first-class power engineer
  • first-class stationary engineer
  • fourth-class power engineer
  • fourth-class stationary engineer
  • furnace boiler operator
  • generating station main operator
  • generating station operator
  • generating station operator – electrical power systems
  • generating station switchboard operator
  • generation substation operator – electrical power systems
  • heating and ventilation equipment tender
  • heating stationary engineer
  • heavy water steam plant operator
  • humidifying systems operator
  • hydro-electric generating station operator
  • hydro-electric power plant operator
  • load dispatcher – electrical power systems
  • load dispatcher apprentice – electrical power systems
  • mobile generator operator
  • nuclear generating station field operator
  • nuclear generating station operator
  • nuclear generating station operator – electrical power systems
  • nuclear reactor control room operator – electrical power systems
  • nuclear reactor operator
  • nuclear reactor operator – electrical power systems
  • nuclear station control room operator
  • operator, air conditioning systems
  • operator, boiler
  • operator, steam plant
  • plant maintenance engineer, stationary
  • plant maintenance stationary engineer
  • power control room operator – electrical power systems
  • power dispatcher
  • power dispatcher – electrical power systems
  • power dispatcher – generating station
  • power engineer
  • power engineer apprentice
  • power engineer, first class
  • power engineer, fourth class
  • power engineer, second class
  • power engineer, third class
  • power plant operator
  • power plant operator – electrical power systems
  • power plant stationary engineer
  • power reactor operator – electrical power systems
  • power station operator – electrical power systems
  • power substation operator
  • power switchboard operator – electrical power systems
  • power switchboard operator apprentice – electrical power systems
  • power system operator
  • power system operator – offshore drilling
  • powerhouse operator
  • rectifier operator – electrical power systems
  • refrigeration plant operator
  • second-class stationary engineer
  • second-lass power engineer
  • station operator – electrical power systems
  • stationary engineer
  • stationary engineer “A” and refrigeration plant operator
  • stationary engineer “B” and refrigeration plant operator
  • stationary engineer apprentice
  • stationary engineer, fifth class
  • stationary engineer, first class
  • stationary engineer, fourth class
  • stationary engineer, hospital
  • stationary engineer, plant maintenance
  • stationary engineer, second class
  • stationary engineer, steam power plant
  • stationary engineer, third class
  • stationary operating engineer
  • stationary power engineer
  • steam operator
  • steam plant operator
  • steam power plant stationary engineer
  • steam turbine operator – electrical power systems
  • substation inspector – electrical power systems
  • substation operator
  • substation operator – electrical power systems
  • system control centre operator – electrical power systems
  • system controller – electrical power systems
  • system operator – electrical power systems
  • technician, building systems
  • tender, heating and ventilation equipment
  • thermal plant operator
  • third-class power engineer
  • third-class stationary engineer
  • turbine operator – stationary engines

Exclusions

  • Nuclear power station equipment mechanics (See 7311 Construction millwrights and industrial mechanics)
  • Professional engineers (See 213 Civil, mechanical, electrical and chemical engineers)
  • Supervisors of stationary engineers and auxiliary equipment operators (See 9212 Supervisors, petroleum, gas and chemical processing and utilities)

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