Nanotechnologists design and build devices and materials on a tiny scale.
Salary range: £13,000 to £60,000
How to become a nanotechnologist
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- working towards this role
You’ll usually need a degree or a postgraduate master’s qualification in nanotechnology, or a related course which includes nanotechnology. Relevant courses include:
- electronics engineering
- materials science
Some employers may expect you to have, or be working towards, a PhD. You’ll usually also need experience of working in a laboratory environment.
Employers value experience. It may help to study for a degree that includes experience in the industry you want to work in. You could look for work placements with nanotechnology companies.
You’ll usually need:
- 2 or 3 A levels, or equivalent, including maths and a science for a degree
- a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study
- equivalent entry requirements
- student finance for fees and living costs
- university courses and entry requirements
You may be able to move into nanotechnology if you’re already working in research science or engineering, for example, as a chemist, physicist or electronics engineer.
You can find out more about careers in nanotechnology through Nanowerk.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- science skills
- maths knowledge
- knowledge of engineering science and technology
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- knowledge of physics
- analytical thinking skills
- persistence and determination
- the ability to think clearly using logic and reasoning
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently
What you’ll do
Your day-to day duties may include:
- creating devices and materials on the nanoscale – 0.1 to 100nm in size
- operating scientific instruments to separate and analyse your products
- performing experiments to test the nanotechnology you have produced
- maintaining production and experimental equipment
- using computers to interpret data
- preparing learning materials and planning lectures
- giving lectures to students and leading workshops
- planning research schedules and overseeing staff in a laboratory
- writing reports and articles
- ordering materials, chemicals and stock for your laboratory
You could work in a laboratory.
You may need to wear protective clothing.
Career path and progression
With experience you could work your way up to a management role.
You could also move into a teaching or lecturing role.
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