Geothermal Technicians

Also called: Corrosion Technician, Design Technician, Distribution Field Technician, Field Distribution Technician, Geothermal Field Technician

Varies

estimated salary

Geothermal technicians perform technical activities at power plants or individual installations necessary for the generation of power from geothermal energy sources. Monitor and control operating activities at geothermal power generation facilities and perform maintenance and repairs as necessary. Install, test, and maintain residential and commercial geothermal heat pumps.

  • Monitor and adjust operations of geothermal power plant equipment or systems.
  • Prepare and maintain logs, reports, or other documentation of work performed.
  • Identify and correct malfunctions of geothermal plant equipment, electrical systems, instrumentation, or controls.
  • Collect and record data associated with operating geothermal power plants or well fields.
  • Determine whether emergency or auxiliary systems will be needed to keep properties heated or cooled in extreme weather conditions.
  • Perform pre- and post-installation pressure, flow, and related tests of vertical and horizontal geothermal loop piping.
  • Identify equipment options, such as compressors, and make appropriate selections.
  • Adjust power production systems to meet load and distribution demands.
  • Maintain electrical switchgear, process controls, transmitters, gauges, and control equipment in accordance with geothermal plant procedures.
  • Calculate heat loss and heat gain factors for residential properties to determine heating and cooling required by installed geothermal systems.
  • Maintain, calibrate, or repair plant instrumentation, control, and electronic devices in geothermal plants.
  • Install and maintain geothermal plant electrical protection equipment.
  • Design and lay out geothermal heat systems according to property characteristics, heating and cooling requirements, piping and equipment requirements, applicable regulations, or other factors.
  • Install and maintain geothermal system instrumentation or controls.
  • Prepare newly installed geothermal heat systems for operation by flushing, purging, or other actions.
  • Weld piping, such as high density polyethylene (HDPE) piping, using techniques such as butt, socket, side-wall, and electro-fusion welding.
  • Test water sources for factors, such as flow volume and contaminant presence.
  • Install, maintain, or repair ground or water source-coupled heat pumps to heat and cool residential or commercial building air or water.
  • Integrate hot water heater systems with geothermal heat exchange systems.
  • Determine the type of geothermal loop system most suitable to a specific property and its heating and cooling needs.
  • Dig trenches for system piping to appropriate depths and lay piping in trenches.
  • Apply coatings or operate systems to mitigate corrosion of geothermal plant equipment or structures.
  • Backfill piping trenches to protect pipes from damage.
  • Operate equipment, such as excavators, backhoes, rock hammers, trench compactors, pavement saws, grout mixers or pumps, geothermal loop reels, and coil tubing units (CTU).
Work Context

Work Context information for this career will be available soon.

Work Activities
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
  • Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
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Detailed Work Activities
  • Troubleshoot equipment or systems operation problems.
  • Repair green energy equipment or systems.
  • Install energy-efficient heating, ventilation, or air conditioning (HVAC) equipment.
  • Service heating, ventilation or air-conditioning (HVAC) systems or components.
  • Adjust equipment to ensure optimal performance.
  • Adjust equipment to ensure optimal performance.
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Knowledge

Mechanical
  • Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
English Language
  • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Physics
  • Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
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Skills

Operation Monitoring
  • Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Monitoring
  • Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Troubleshooting
  • Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
Operation and Control
  • Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
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Abilities

Near Vision
  • The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Deductive Reasoning
  • The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Problem Sensitivity
  • The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Perceptual Speed
  • The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
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Personality

People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.
They do well at jobs that need:
  • Achievement/Effort
  • Persistence
  • Initiative
  • Leadership
  • Cooperation
  • Concern for Others
  • Social Orientation
  • Self Control
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Technology

You might use software like this on the job:

Computer aided design CAD software
  • Autodesk AutoCAD Hot Technology
Enterprise resource planning ERP software
  • SAP Hot Technology
Word processing software
  • Microsoft Word Hot Technology
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Education

Get started on your career:

Job Outlook

New job opportunities are less likely in the future.
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