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– Power & Solar Technologies

Solar Technology Lab

What do powerplant operators, distributors, and dispatchers do?

Control and work on the systems that generate and distribute electric power. Nuclear power reactor operators control nuclear reactors, adjust control rods, and monitor reactors, turbines, generators, and cooling systems. Power distributors and dispatchers control the flow of electricity as it travels from generating stations to substations and users. Power plant operators control, operate, and maintain machinery that is used to generate electricity.

Responsibilities Include:

  • Control power-generating equipment, which may use any one type of fuel, such as coal, nuclear power, or natural gas
  • Read charts, meters, and gauges to monitor voltage and electricity flows
  • Check equipment and indicators to detect evidence of operating problems
  • Adjust controls to regulate the flow of power
  • Start or stop generators, turbines, and other equipment as necessary

Job Outlook:

Overall employment of powerplant operators, distributors, and dispatchers is projected to decline 15 percent from 2021 to 2031.

What do Solar Photovoltaic Installers do?

Install, assemble, set up, and maintain rooftop or other systems that convert sunlight into energy.

Responsibilities Include:

  • Plan PV system configurations based on customer needs and site conditions
  • Measure, cut, and assemble the support structure for solar PV panels
  • Install solar modules, panels, and support structures according to building codes and standards
  • Connect PV panels to the electrical system
  • Apply weather sealant to equipment being installed
  • Activate, test, and perform maintenance on PV systems

Job Outlook:

Overall employment of Solar Photovoltaic Installers is projected to increase 27 percent from 2021 to 2031.

More information: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/production/power-plant-operators-distributors-and-dispatchers.htm

Median Annual Pay for Power Plant Operators, Distributors, and Dispatchers
$45.57 | Hourly


High-End Earners


Median Annual Pay for Solar Photovoltaic Installers
$22.92 | Hourly


High-End Earners


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Certificate of Proficiency in Power Technologies
Certificate of Proficiency in Solar Energy Technology
Technical Certificate in Power Plant Technology
Associate of Applied Science in Power Technologies

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