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Chemical Laboratory Technician
Chemical laboratory technicians work with chemists and chemical engineers to develop, produce, sell and utilize chemical and related products and equipment.

They set up and conduct tests on products or processes being developed or improved. They measure reactions, analyze results and carefully record data from these tests and experiments.

Some technicians assist with design, equipment installation, and training or supervision of operators on the production line. Others test materials, production processes and final products to make sure they meet specifications and quality standards. A few technicians work as sales personnel.

Areas of specialization include:

- Analytical chemistry
- Polymer technology
- Food processing
- Medicines
- Research
- Production control
- Quality control.

Satisfying Aspects
- working as part of the scientific team
- a wide variety of specialities available
- working in the field of chemistry, without having to obtain an advanced degree
- good job opportunities

Demanding aspects
- having to work long hours, weekends or evenings when a test or experiment has to be completed
- having limited advancement opportunities without additional education
- the possibility of injury on the job if safety precautions are not strictly followed

A chemical laboratory technician should:
- enjoy detailed work
- be accurate and careful
- think creatively
- work well without supervision
- be able to communicate clearly both in speech and in writing
- be safety conscious

School Subjects
National Senior Certificate for a diploma course

Compulsory Subjects: Mathematics, Physical Sciences
Recommended Subjects: Life Sciences

Degree: BTech can be obtained at UNISA

Diploma: CPUT, DUT, TUT and VUT.

- chemical manufacturers and other industries, such as: petroleum refining, synthetic fuel manufacture, food processing, brewing, minerals processing, paper and pulp, pollution control, manufacture of synthetic fibres, fertilizers and explosives
- such organizations as: CSIR, AECI, Eskom, Sasol, NECSA, Sentrachem
- Atomic Energy Board
- Uranium Enrichment Corporation
- Council for Mineral Technology (Mintek)
- government departments and non-profit organizations
- educational institutions

South African Chemical Institute      
School of Chemistry
University of the Witwatersrand
Private Bag X3
Wits, 2050
Tel: (011) 717-6741 (from 8am -1pm)
Fax: (011) 717-6779