Metallurgical and materials engineers (NOC 2142)

About this job

Metallurgical and materials engineers:

  • carry out studies of the properties and characteristics of metals and other non-metallic materials
  • plan, design and develop machinery and processes to concentrate, extract, refine and process metals, alloys and other materials such as ceramics, semiconductors and composite materials
  • work for consulting engineering firms; mining, metal processing and manufacturing companies; and in government, research and educational institutions
Common job titles
  • engineer, coal preparation consulting
  • engineer, corrosion
  • engineer, electrometallurgical
  • engineer, extractive metallurgy
  • engineer, foundry
  • engineer, hydrometallurgical


Metallurgical and materials engineers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • carry out studies and design, develop and specify the processes and machinery to concentrate, extract, refine and process metals from ores
  • carry out studies on the properties and characteristics of materials, and design, develop and specify processes for moulding, shaping, forming and thermal treatment of metals, alloys and metallic systems, ceramics, semiconducting and other materials
  • carry out chemical and physical studies, failure analyses and other studies, and recommend material selection, design of materials, corrosion control measures, operational testing and other procedures
  • co-ordinate production testing and control of metal refining, smelting or foundry operations or non-metallic materials production operations
  • supervise technologists, technicians and other engineers and scientists

Work environment

Work in this occupation is typically performed in a structured environment, such as an office or school.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

Metallurgical engineers research and develop new alloys and systems for extracting metal from ores, while materials engineers research and develop new non-metallic materials with physical characteristics to meet specific requirements.

There is considerable mobility between engineering specializations at the less senior levels, and engineers often work in a multidisciplinary environment and acquire knowledge and skills through work experience that may allow them to practise in associated areas of science, engineering, sales, marketing or management.

Metallurgical and materials engineers also work closely with other engineers and scientists and mobility is possible between some fields of specialization.

Additional resources

Additional resources are not currently available for this career.