|Position Title||Mechanical Engineer|
|Alternate Title(s)||Project Engineer, Quality Engineer, Research Engineer, Design Engineer, Sales Engineer|
|Education & Training Level||Advanced, Bachelor’s degree required, prefer graduate degree|
|Education & Training Level Description||Mechanical engineers need a bachelor’s degree. A graduate degree is typically needed for promotion into advanced or managerial positions.|
|Brief job description||Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. There are many different applications of a mechanical engineer’s skills in the wind industry, but they generally research, design, develop, and test tools, machines, and mechanical devices. Mechanical engineers work on wind turbine siting, components and systems, contributing to performance optimization and cost reductions for project developers, manufacturing and operation companies.|
|Preferred Level of Education||Bachelor’s degree|
|Preferred Level of Experience||See the Bureau of Labor Statistics for more information.|
|Estimated/Expected Salary||See the Bureau of Labor Statistics for more information.|
There are many different applications of a mechanical engineer’s skills in the wind industry, but they generally research, design, develop, and test tools, machines, and mechanical devices. They also perform wind resource assessments for siting. Their work contributes to performance optimization and cost reductions for project developers, manufacturing and operation companies.
In general, mechanical engineers use their training to do the following:
In the wind industry, mechanical engineers work across each sector to provide technical expertise and support, ensuring continuous improvements in the research, design, production, installation, operation and maintenance of the mechanical products, equipment, systems and processes of a wind turbine or wind plant.
During project development, mechanical engineers often consult with project developers and engineers, reviewing site characteristics, suggesting possible turbines or helping find solutions to other project issues that arise. They may help project developers and engineers to identify project performance requirements, estimate costs and contribute to developing bids for potential projects.
Prior to the construction of a wind farm, mechanical engineers may work on wind turbine resource assessment, siting, construction and commissioning. Once construction begins, they oversee the installation of wind turbines to ensure that they are assembled properly and functioning according to specifications prior to turbine and wind plant commissioning.
During construction, they might design and implement lifting plans for cranes, conduct transportation studies for component delivery, perform verification of installation of turbine components, and they test installation equipment. They also create quality control procedures for installation of turbine components in coordination with the original equipment manufacturer.
During the operational phase of the wind plant, mechanical engineers may work for the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) or the operating company, ensuring that individual wind turbines and the entire wind plant continue to operate and perform according to specifications. They establish or coordinate the maintenance or service schedule as wells as enforce safety procedures and coordinate the supply of materials required to maintain machines or equipment in the prescribed condition. When issues arise, mechanical engineers may be required to investigate the issue, troubleshoot and identify the root cause and work with the manufacturer or customer to resolve the issue. Mechanical Engineers also oversee Wind Technician work on repairs and maintenance.
Mechanical engineers may be responsible for the following: