Power Plant Operators

* Green economy activities and technologies are likely to cause significant change to the work and worker requirements. New tasks, skills, knowledge, credentials may be needed. Employment demand remains the same, but there is potential for an increase.
Description

Control, operate, or maintain machinery to generate electric power. Includes auxiliary equipment operators.

Sample Job Titles
Auxiliary Operator
Control Operator
Control Room Operator
Multicraft Operator (MCO)
Operations and Maintenance Technician (O & M Technician)
Plant Control Operator
Power Plant Operator
Senior Power Plant Operator
Station Operator
Unit Operator
Skills
Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Troubleshooting - Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
Abilities
Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
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.
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.
Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
Knowledge
Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Chemistry - Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
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.
Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
Tasks
Adjust controls to generate specified electrical power or to regulate the flow of power between generating stations and substations.
Monitor power plant equipment and indicators to detect evidence of operating problems.
Control generator output to match the phase, frequency, or voltage of electricity supplied to panels.
Control or maintain auxiliary equipment, such as pumps, fans, compressors, condensers, feedwater heaters, filters, or chlorinators, to supply water, fuel, lubricants, air, or auxiliary power.
Control power generating equipment, including boilers, turbines, generators, or reactors, using control boards or semi-automatic equipment.
Start or stop generators, auxiliary pumping equipment, turbines, or other power plant equipment as necessary.
Open and close valves and switches in sequence to start or shut down auxiliary units.
Communicate with systems operators to regulate and coordinate line voltages and transmission loads and frequencies.
Inspect records or log book entries or communicate with plant personnel to assess equipment operating status.
Regulate equipment operations and conditions, such as water levels, based on instrument data or from computers.
Work Activities
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).
Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
Personality Traits
Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.