Refrigeration engineers install, repair, maintain, and/or design refrigeration equipment that is used in a commercial or industrial location. These locations usually require food or other perishable items to be stored at a constant low temperature. Refrigeration engineers may also design or maintain refrigeration units in residential settings, healthcare facilities, and mobile units, such as in insulated trucks and trailers. This position is usually held by someone who has an interest in hands-on engineering, a knowledge of thermodynamics, and a desire to create specialized systems.
Refrigeration engineers must be able to effectively communicate project goals to their customers or clients. They must have good verbal and written skills, as well as computation skills. The ability to problem-solve is highly beneficial. Technical skills, the ability to work on a team, and IT skills are also advantageous. The duties of a refrigeration engineer include planning pipe layouts, estimating the cost of a project, and ordering materials, such as copper, steel, and plastic. Surveying and visiting the premises is usually required. Diagnosing and fixing refrigeration equipment is frequently required for this position. Supervising and organizing craft workers may be required as well.
Most refrigeration engineers have a four-year bachelor's degree in engineering, usually mechanical engineering. An apprenticeship program is usually required to attain a refrigeration engineering position. An accreditation program by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) is usually required in most states in America as well. Successfully passing the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam may be required, depending on the position.
Engineer Refrigeration Tasks
Design thermal assemblies, sub assemblies, and components for electro-mechanical and thermodynamic systems, refrigeration systems, and mechanical systems.
Record and maintain documentation and inventory.
Maintain product development schedules.
Manage external vendors ad contractors supplying design, sizing, piping, and equipment selection.
Coordinate, operate, inspect, repair and maintain all refrigeration systems and parts.