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Biochemical engineer

A biochemical engineer applies cutting-edge technology to biological materials, systems and processes in order to create new products.

The chemicals industry develops and manufactures the chemicals we need in everyday life in a safe, environmentally friendly and economic way. Biochemical engineering is a branch of chemical engineering which applies technological advancements to biological materials. Biochemical engineers combine knowledge of biology, chemistry and engineering to create products from raw materials and develop the processes for achieving this.

They also find solutions to problems which occur when materials and processes interact with the environment. This could encompass a wide range of activities, including producing new, cleaner fuels from natural resources, and developing and implementing processes to produce drugs and medicines, food and drinks.

Food engineering

Food engineers work in the food, drinks and biotechnology sectors. These specialist engineers focus on production and food processing systems. Essentially they can be found working in any aspect of the conversion of raw food material to the packaged, finished products. They can design food production and food processing systems and production machinery and work on the designs of packaging, storage facilities or even distribution. Agricultural and food engineers work in a huge range of organisations, including equipment manufacturers and food and drink producers.

Work activities

  • Designing and constructing chemical and pharmaceutical plant.
  • Collaborating with scientists and other disciplines in the design and implementation of new products and production techniques.
  • Providing engineering services to manufacturing companies.
  • Working in production; modifying and optimising production processes.
  • Maintaining production lines and machinery.

Work conditions

Travel: is not a regular feature. Work is based either in an office, plant or laboratory.
Working hours: are standard office hours; some projects may require more time.
Location: vacancies can be found in cities throughout the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Entry requirements

A BSc degree in biological or chemical engineering or a primary degree in a science related area is necessary for applications for MSc courses. An MSc in biological or chemical engineering is almost always required to ensure career development.

Further information

Industrial manufacturing and production is one of the Republic of Ireland’s most significant employment sectors due to the large number of multinational companies based in the country.