Gas Plant Operators

Description

Distribute or process gas for utility companies and others by controlling compressors to maintain specified pressures on main pipelines.

Tasks

  • Monitor transportation and storage of flammable and other potentially dangerous products to ensure that safety guidelines are followed.
  • Monitor equipment functioning, observe temperature, level, and flow gauges, and perform regular unit checks, in order to ensure that all equipment is operating as it should.
  • Control operation of compressors, scrubbers, evaporators, and refrigeration equipment in order to liquefy, compress, or regasify natural gas.
  • Start and shut down plant equipment.
  • Record, review, and compile operations records, test results, and gauge readings such as temperatures, pressures, concentrations, and flows.
  • Adjust temperature, pressure, vacuum, level, flow rate, and/or transfer of gas to maintain processes at required levels or to correct problems.
  • Clean, maintain, and repair equipment, using hand tools, or request that repair and maintenance work be performed.
  • Collaborate with other operators to solve unit problems.
  • Determine causes of abnormal pressure variances, and make corrective recommendations, such as installation of pipes to relieve overloading.
  • Read logsheets to determine product demand and disposition, or to detect malfunctions.
  • Test gas, chemicals, and air during processing to assess factors such as purity and moisture content, and to detect quality problems or gas or chemical leaks.
  • Contact maintenance crews when necessary.
  • Change charts in recording meters.
  • Distribute or process gas for utility companies or industrial plants, using panel boards, control boards, and semi-automatic equipment.
  • Control equipment to regulate flow and pressure of gas to feedlines of boilers, furnaces, and related steam-generating or heating equipment.
  • Control fractioning columns, compressors, purifying towers, heat exchangers, and related equipment in order to extract nitrogen and oxygen from air.
  • Calculate gas ratios to detect deviations from specifications, using testing apparatus.
  • Signal or direct workers who tend auxiliary equipment.
  • Operate construction equipment to install and maintain gas distribution systems.

Knowledge

Sales and Marketing
Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Food Production
Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
Fine Arts
Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

Skills

Installation
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.

Abilities

Explosive Strength
The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
Dynamic Flexibility
The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.

Interests

Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Work Style

Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Analytical Thinking
Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
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.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Adaptability/Flexibility
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Initiative
Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.

Work Values

Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

Lay Titles

Compressor Station Operator
Dispatcher
Engine Room Operator
Field Gauger
Fuel Attendant
Gas Controller
Gas Dispatcher
Gas Distribution Plant Operator
Gas Maker
Gas Operator
Gas Plant Operator
Gas Processing Plant Operator
Gas Producer
Gas System Operator
Gas Treater
Gauger
High Pressure Operator
Liquefaction and Regasification Plant Operator
Liquefaction Plant Operator
Liquid Natural Gas Plant Operator (LNG Plant Operator)
Liquified Natural Gas Specialist (LNG Specialist)
Liquified Natural Gas Technician (LNG Technician)
Load Dispatcher
Operation Specialist
Oxygen Plant Operator
Plant Operator
Pressure Controller
Pressure Dispatcher
Process Plant Operator
Regasification Plant Operator
Tank Terminal Gauger
Terminal Gauger
Water Gas Operator

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$29.39 hourly, $61,140 annual.
Employment (2008):
12,380 employees