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Jobs >> Jobs Articles >> Career Feature >> Design a Roller Coaster as an Engineer


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Career Feature

Design a Roller Coaster as an Engineer

By   |  Dated: 02-15-2016

Summary: Go for fun with your engineering degree and work with a team to develop and design the best roller coasters in the world.

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Design a Roller Coaster as an Engineer

Engineers can have some of the most exciting and creative jobs. They must determine where the tracks should be placed, select the right roller coaster for an environment, and then make the roller coaster safe. Making sure the ride is safe means they have to test them out to make sure the weights and speeds are set correctly. Most states require these engineers to have a license. In order to become a roller coaster engineer, quite a bit of school is required. While no university has a specific roller coaster engineer degree, there are a few that offer degrees that are similar. A roller coaster design team is generally comprised of electrical, structural, and mechanical engineers. Classes like physics, math, and drafting are very important to take. It is advised that anyone wishing to end up in this career obtain a master’s degree in areas like heat transfer, system dynamics, fluid mechanics and more to make them more competitive.

Roller coasters need to have something exciting about them to make them popular rides that parks are willing to pay a lot of money for. This means loops, embankments, and decorations must be considered, but that also makes the danger level higher. A team of engineers and drafters work together to develop the structure, electronics and layout of the ride, but factors like budget and park size can affect the final project. The average income for mechanical engineers is around $87,000, and there is expected to be a small percent of job growth. The actual salary varies from job to job, with some sources listing the range between $45,000 and $80,000, and the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics estimating a range of $50,550 and $119,480, with the median at $74,920.
Photo: polycentric.cpp.edu

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