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Home » Marine Engineering: Know How to Become Marine Engineer, Salary, Job Opportunities & Much More!

Marine Engineering: Know How to Become Marine Engineer, Salary, Job Opportunities & Much More!

Career in Marine Engineering

Have you ever dreamt of sailing on board a ship to distant ports across the oceans? Have you ever dreamt of living a life on board a cruise ship? Are you a technical type who loves Science and Mathematics but rather than pursuing a conventional Engineering degree, could settle for a life? If yes, then you may think of a career in Marine Engineering.

Ships, perhaps one of the most ancient modes of transport, have a charm for many that is unmatched even by the fastest aircraft of today. Modern-day ships are like mini-cities with resident quarters, kitchens, cafés, recreational facilities, and so on.

Especially luxury cruise ships. These have everything that you can imagine. From swimming pools to tennis courts and from fine dining restaurants to casinos, these cruise ships have it all. Oh yes, you would feel like you are living in a 5-star hotel.

Who manages the operations of these floating mini-cities? Deck Officers and Marine Engineers. Deck Officers lead the navigation of the ships and all other non-technical processes and services. At the top of the ladder is the captain who is the head of all departments on board.

Marine Engineers take care of the smooth running of the engines as well as all the mechanical, electrical, and electronic equipment, machinery, systems, and processes. At the top of the Marine Engineering function is the Chief Engineer who reports to the ship Captain.

What is marine engineering?

Marine engineering is a specialized field of engineering that focuses on the design, development, operation, and maintenance of various systems and equipment used in marine environments. This includes ships, boats, offshore structures, and other maritime systems. Marine engineering combines elements of mechanical, electrical, and naval architecture engineering to enable the effective functioning of maritime technologies.

Who is a marine engineer?

Marine engineers are responsible for designing propulsion systems, power generation systems, navigation equipment, communication systems, and other critical machinery that ensure the safe and efficient operation of vessels at sea. They also play a crucial role in developing solutions to address environmental and sustainability challenges in the maritime industry. In addition to technical expertise, marine engineers must have a solid understanding of maritime regulations and safety protocols to ensure compliance and prevent accidents.

What does a marine engineer do?

Marine engineers undertake a range of tasks to ensure the smooth operation and safety of maritime systems:

  • Design and Development: They design and develop propulsion systems, engines, and machinery for ships and offshore structures.
  • Maintenance and Repair: They oversee maintenance schedules, troubleshoot issues, and perform repairs on various equipment, ensuring continuous operation.
  • Safety and Compliance: They ensure that vessels adhere to safety regulations and environmental standards, preventing accidents and minimizing environmental impact.
  • Performance Optimization: They work to enhance fuel efficiency, reduce emissions, and improve overall system performance.
  • Navigation and Communication: They handle navigation and communication systems to ensure vessels’ safe passage and effective communication with onshore facilities.
  • Innovation and Research: They research and implement new technologies to advance maritime engineering, such as automation, renewable energy integration, and digital solutions.
  • Project Management: They manage engineering projects, collaborating with teams to meet deadlines, budgets, and specifications.
  • Risk Assessment: They assess potential risks and develop contingency plans to address emergencies and unforeseen events at sea.

Also, read: Career in The Merchant Navy

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How to become a Marine Engineer? After 12th

Now that you know everything about marine engineering, it’s time to explore the eligibility criteria to become a marine engineer! So, without further ado, let’s get started…

For those passionate about ships, technology, and the open seas, this guide outlines the steps to embark on the journey, including a list of marine engineering courses.

Step 1: Educational Foundation

To start your journey towards becoming a Marine Engineer, you need to complete your class 12th education with a focus on physics, chemistry, and mathematics. A minimum of 50% marks from a recognized board is required to proceed.

Step 2: Entrance Exams for Marine Engineering

After your class 12th, you’ll need to appear for entrance examinations conducted by universities, and national, and state-level bodies. Some of the prominent exams include:

  1. JEE Main and JEE Advanced: These are prestigious engineering entrance exams that are accepted by several institutions offering marine engineering courses.
  2. IMU CET: Indian Maritime University Common Entrance Test is specifically designed for admission to various marine and maritime programs.
  3. WBJEE: The West Bengal Joint Entrance Examination also offers opportunities for aspiring marine engineers.

Step 3: Pursue an Undergraduate Degree

Once you’ve successfully cleared the entrance exams, it’s time to enroll in an undergraduate marine engineering program. Some of the top specializations include:

B.Tech. Specializations

  1. Marine Engineering
  2. Ocean Engineering

B.E. Specializations

  1. Marine Engineering
  2. Ocean Engineering
  3. Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering

Step 4: Post-Undergraduate Options

Upon completing your undergraduate degree, you have two primary options:

Option 1: Work Experience and Postgraduate Studies

Begin your career with an entry-level position in the industry. Gain practical experience as a Marine Engineer for a few years. Subsequently, consider enrolling in a postgraduate Marine Engineering course to further enhance your skills and knowledge.

Option 2: Direct Career Start

Alternatively, you can start working at an entry-level position right after completing your undergraduate degree. This provides hands-on experience from the outset.

Postgraduate Pursuits

If you decide to pursue a postgraduate degree, you can consider the following specializations:

M.Tech. Specializations

  • Marine Engineering
  • Ocean Engineering

M.E. Specializations

  • Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering

Duration of Study

The undergraduate marine engineering program generally spans 4 years. Therefore, from your class 12th  education to completing your bachelor’s degree, you’re looking at a minimum of four years of dedicated study and preparation to become a qualified Marine Engineer.

Also, read: What To Do After 12th

Eligibility criteria to become a marine engineer – after 10th

In this section, we will explore how to become a marine engineer right after your class 10th!

Step 01: Class 10

Pass your Class 10 Board Examination with Science, Mathematics, and English (along with other subjects). You must have passed English with at least 50% marks.

Step 02: Diploma

Diploma in Marine Engineering / Naval Architecture / Mechanical Engineering / Electrical Engineering / Electronics Engineering / Electrical & Electronics Engineering / Electronics & Communication Engineering / Ship Building Engineering

Appear for the Polytechnic Entrance Examination in your State and on qualifying, take admission to a 3-year Diploma in Marine/ Mechanical/ Electrical/ Electronics/ Electrical & Electronics / Electronics & Communication Engineering or to a 4-year Diploma in Ship Building Engineering at a Polytechnic.

Step 03: Pre-Sea Training

  • If you have completed a 3-year Diploma in Marine/ Mechanical/ Electrical/ Electronics/ Electrical & Electronics / Electronics & Communication Engineering or a 4-year Diploma in Ship Building Engineering and obtained at least 50% marks in aggregate in the final examination, then you will have to undergo a compulsory 2-year Pre-Sea Training Course for the Diploma holders.
  • You must do this 2-year Pre-Sea training course at an institution approved by the Directorate General of Shipping, Government of India.

Skills required to be a Marine Engineer

Here’s a table outlining the skills required to be a Marine Engineer:

Skills RequiredDescription
Technical ProficiencyStrong understanding of ship systems, machinery, and maritime technology.
Problem-SolvingAbility to diagnose and troubleshoot complex mechanical and electrical issues.
Analytical ThinkingCapacity to analyze data, interpret technical drawings, and devise effective solutions.
Attention to DetailPrecise focus on maintenance, repairs, and safety protocols for ship operations.
CommunicationEffective communication with crew members, supervisors, and stakeholders.
Team CollaborationWork well in maritime teams to ensure seamless ship operations and maintenance.
AdaptabilityAble to adjust to changing conditions, emergencies, and long periods at sea.
LeadershipSupervisory skills to manage engineering teams and ensure efficient operations.
Safety AwarenessThorough understanding of safety regulations to prevent accidents and hazards.
Time ManagementEfficiently manage tasks, maintenance schedules, and repair deadlines.

These skills are essential for a successful career as a Marine Engineer, enabling professionals to navigate the challenges of ship engineering and maintenance effectively.

Top Marine Engineering Colleges in India

In India, there are approximately 77 colleges that offer Marine Engineering programs. Among these, 51 belong to the private sector, while 16 are publicly owned institutions. Students aspiring to enter this field can do so after completing their Class 12 with a science background, particularly in Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics (PCM). The course itself spans 4 years.

It’s important to note that for both undergraduate and postgraduate Marine Engineering programs, entrance exams are commonly required, as not all colleges admit students solely on a merit basis. This ensures a competitive selection process for interested candidates seeking to pursue a career in Marine Engineering.

Below are some of the marine engineering colleges in India:

  1. Indian Maritime University, Kolkata
  2. Indian Maritime University, Chennai
  3. Indian Maritime University, Mumbai Port
  4. Indian Maritime University, Visakhapatnam
  5. Tolani Maritime Institute, Pune
  6. Coimbatore Marine College
  7. Hindustan Institute of Maritime Training, Chennai
  8. International Maritime Institute, Delhi
  9. Samudra Institute for Maritime Studies, Mumbai
  10. Euro Tech Maritime Academy, Cochin
  11. School of Maritime Studies, Vels Institute of Science, Technology, and Advanced Studies, Chennai
  12. BP Marine Academy, Navi Mumbai

Marine engineering job opportunities

Marine engineering presents an array of enticing job opportunities for aspiring engineers with a passion for maritime technology. With an anticipated growth rate of 12% between 2016 and 2026, marine engineers and naval architects are positioned for a fast-paced and rewarding professional journey.

Diverse Job Profiles

Some of the diverse job profiles in marine engineering career are:

  • Chief Electric Tech Officer: Taking charge of the ship’s electrical domain, this role is pivotal for smooth operations.
  • Chief Engineer: Spearheading the vessel’s engineering department, the Chief Engineer ensures the seamless operation and maintenance of onboard equipment.
  • Chief Security Officer: Ensuring operational smoothness and security onboard, a CSO’s role is vital.
  • Design Engineer: Innovators in ship technology, design engineers craft and test novel components for vessels. Their work shapes the future of maritime engineering.
  • Maintenance Engineer: Overseeing machinery quality and fleet reliability, maintenance engineers play a crucial role. Their compensation falls within the range of 6-9 LPA.
  • Navy Personnel: Aspiring mariners can join the Indian Coast Guard and Navy after clearing the Defence Services Exams, safeguarding the nation’s waters.
  • Ship Engineer: Ship engineers are responsible for the operation, maintenance, and repair of the mechanical and electrical systems on ships, including propulsion systems, generators, HVAC systems, and more. They ensure that the vessel operates efficiently and safely
  • Naval Architect: Naval architects design and analyze ships and other maritime structures. They consider factors such as stability, structural integrity, hydrodynamics, and safety regulations to create efficient and safe vessel designs.
  • Offshore Engineer: Offshore engineers work on the design, construction, and maintenance of offshore structures such as oil platforms, wind farms, and subsea pipelines. They need to consider the unique challenges of working in harsh marine environments.

Prominent Recruiters

Several esteemed entities seek marine engineering graduates, either through campus placements or open recruitment examinations. Recruiters include:

  1. Indian Navy
  2. Mobil Shipping Co.
  3. ABG Shipyard
  4. Bharati Shipyard
  5. Orinoco Marine Consultancy
  7. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
  8. Indian Coast Guard
  9. Hyundai Heavy Industries
  10. Reliance

In Conclusion

A career in Marine Engineering is a dream career for many. It’s difficult to get into this career as it is highly competitive. The salary of a marine engineer in India is excellent. You could be earning 5 lacs plus a month before you turn 30 or maybe 35. If you are wise, you will be able to save loads of money – crores to be precise if you work for about 15 years on-board.

But life on board is tough. All the glamour and glitz are for cruise ships. You might get work opportunities on oil tankers which pay you higher but then there’s nothing much to enjoy life. It’s pretty boring actually. Work is monotonous. You do the same thing day after day.

So, it is extremely important to understand whether you are fit for such a career. Does your personality suit the job of a Marine Engineer? Do you have the aptitude to study Marine Engineering?

To get appropriate answers to the questions, it is crucially important to take the help of professional counselors. Do you know about yourself? Are you sure? Maybe, but taking unbiased career counseling can open up a lot of information about yourself. That will help you to decide whether Marine Engineering is for you or not. iDreamCareer is here to assist you in making an informed decision about your future in this thriving field. Take advantage of iDreamCareer’s College & Course Selection Program today and embark on the path toward a successful future! 

Career in Marine Engineering: FAQs

Is pursuing a career in marine engineering a good choice?

Pursuing a career in marine engineering can be a great choice for those passionate about ships, technology, and the sea. It offers diverse opportunities in designing, maintaining, and operating marine systems, with a potential for exciting challenges and global exploration.

Does IIT offer a Marine Engineering course?

While not all IITs provide marine engineering programs, IIT Madras and IIT Kharagpur do offer B.Tech degrees in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering, providing specialized education in maritime-related fields.

Is a high salary attainable for marine engineers?

In India, an entry-level marine engineer with under three years of experience earns around ₹4.9 Lakhs yearly, while the highest salary achieved can reach ₹24.0 Lakhs annually (₹2.0L per month), varying with experience.

Is it difficult to build a career in marine engineering?

Establishing a career in marine engineering can pose challenges, demanding dedicated study for exams and career advancement. Moreover, the field demands resilience for seafaring work, necessitating both physical and mental fortitude to thrive in marine environments.

How important is ongoing learning in the marine engineering field?

Ongoing learning is crucial in marine engineering due to rapid technological advancements and evolving industry regulations. Pursuing certifications, attending workshops, and staying updated with industry publications are essential to maintain a competitive edge.

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