Land-based Engineer

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    Land-based engineers generate solutions to engineering problems within the fields of forestry, horticulture, agriculture, food processing and the environment.

    Land-based engineers have highly-developed technical skills and a sound knowledge of science and technology. You’ll design, develop and install machinery used in the environmental and agricultural industries. Your role also involves working on any issues relating to the functionality and efficiency of vehicles and equipment.

    As well as solving engineering problems, engineers also advise farmers and businesses on agricultural concerns such as sustainable land use and irrigation. Business and management skills are also vitally important.

    The three main areas of land-based engineering are:

    • parts
    • sales
    • servicing.

     

    Employers of land-based engineers

    • Machinery dealerships
    • Machinery manufacturers
    • Government departments
    • Universities
    • Agricultural or environmental consultancies.

     

    Duties

    • designing and testing agricultural equipment including sprayers and ploughs
    • designing and producing agricultural vehicles such as harvesters, tractors and loaders
    • providing advice about soil conservation methods
    • undertaking environmental impact assessments to determine the effect developments would have on the environment
    • producing designs for and managing the construction of farm buildings
    • working in emergency situations to restore water or electricity supplies following natural or human disasters
    • designing, planning and overseeing the construction of irrigation and drainage systems
    • writing and presenting reports
    • carrying out relevant research
    • giving technical support to customers and dealers
    • providing consultancy services

     

    Qualifications

    Employers look for graduates with engineering degrees. A specific agricultural engineering degree is available, but other general engineering subjects will be accepted including:

    • automotive engineering
    • electrical/electronic/mechanical engineering
    • environmental engineering
    • ergonomics
    • mechanical engineering
    • off-road vehicle design.

     

    Skills

    • problem-solving ability
    • ingenuity, to invent new designs or solutions
    • an awareness and understanding of the needs of those who use the equipment, particularly farmers and horticulturalists
    • a flexible approach, with the ability to work unsupervised and to adapt to a variety of different work situations
    • the capability to record and analyze data
    • the ability to work in a team and supervise the work of others
    • an understanding of health and safety regulations
    • good spoken and written communication and IT skills.

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