Have you ever seen cement that is used to build houses or bitumen used to lay roads? Do you have a construction worker in your family? Do you wish to test these items like cement or sand or coal to see if they are strong enough to hold a building or a road? Explore to find what Construction Laboratory Technicians do, how they do it and how to become one.
Construction Laboratory Technicians are responsible for sample collection and test specimen preparation in order to perform various tests of construction materials including sand, cement, bitumen, aggregate, soil, brick, asphalt and concrete blocks. They generally work under strict supervision of senior technicians, civil engineers or project managers in laboratories (laboratory technician) or at construction sites (field technician).
Why become a construction laboratory technician?
Construction Laboratory Technicians need to check the construction materials in the laboratory before they are being used on site. From bricks to cement, they need to check the quality of every construction material. They need to check the concrete in the field and laboratory for air content, slump, and temperature, casting of concrete cylinders, de-molding, and compression testing.
Construction Laboratory Technicians need to set up, conduct and analyze standard field and lab tests following prescribed procedures. They might also need to regularly visit the site to collect samples. They should possess thorough knowledge of the materials and should be able to detect the quality of the materials used. After the checking is done, they need to assist in documenting on-site test results also need to explain unusual findings. They generally work with their team. Thus, they need to co-operate with everyone and keep up the teamwork. Since they work with construction materials, they need to follow the safety protocols strictly.
As a Construction Laboratory Technician, you will be responsible for sample collection and test specimen preparation in order to perform various tests of construction materials including sand, cement, bitumen, aggregate, soil, brick, asphalt and concrete blocks. You will generally work under strict supervision of senior technicians, civil engineers or project managers in laboratories (laboratory technician) or at construction sites (field technician).
You will have to constantly check the working conditions of instruments and accessories. You will have to monitor and record temperatures or use weighing balances. You will be selecting, running & maintaining test instruments and apparatus used for cement, concrete, brick samples, aggregate testing, soil or bitumen testing.
Construction Laboratory and Field Technicians generally have to work in laboratories or offices in a production setting to conduct their tests. However, you may have to occasionally visit sites and conduct their tests outdoors (field testing). You will be exposed to dust and soot and you will have to deal with lots of machinery. Generally, construction laboratory workers will have to work for 6-8 per day that is around 40 hours per week.
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What does a Construction Laboratory Technician do?
As a Construction Laboratory Technician, you will be engaged with one or more of the following roles and responsibilities: –
- You will have to read and understand relevant standard test procedures, technical specifications before beginning the tests for construction materials like sand, asphalt, cement, aggregate, bricks and concrete blocks.
- You will have to collect product samples and prepare them for laboratory analysis or testing.
- You will weigh or measure materials, equipment, or products using volume meters, scales, rules, or callipers.
- You will be selecting, operating and maintaining different test equipment and instruments used for testing.
- You have to carry out soil testing or bitumen testing at construction sites or a laboratory.
- You will have to document quality, quantity, weight, type, test result data, and value of materials or products for maintaining shipping, receiving, and production records and files.
- You will have to store tested samples safely in the laboratory for specified durations.
- You will have to ensure that tested samples are reused or safely disposed of as required.
How to become a Construction Laboratory Technician – Eligibility Criteria
After Class 10, you can go for:
- NSQF courses.
- Diploma courses
- ITI training.
- CTS courses.
Various private/public vocational training establishments across India also offer related courses for:
- Concrete Technologies
The cost of education and training to become a Construction Laboratory Technician in India can vary depending on a variety of factors such as the type of institution, location, and course duration.
Typically, to become a Construction Laboratory Technician in India, one can pursue a diploma or a degree program in civil engineering or related fields. The duration of these courses may range from 1-3 years.
The cost of a diploma program in civil engineering can range from INR 20,000 to INR 1,50,000 per year, depending on the institution and location. A degree program in civil engineering may cost between INR 50,000 to INR 2,50,000 per year, depending on the institution and location.
You may get job roles like:
- Construction Laboratory Technician
- Lab Technician (Construction Material Testing)
- Quality Technician
- QC Lab Technician
- Technician – Soil and Asphalt
- Quality Assurance and Quality Control – Technician
You will mainly find work in industries like:
- Real Estate
Salary of Construction Laboratory Technician
At the beginning of your career as a Trainee, you will be earning about Rs. 14,000-16,000 per month.
After 2-3 years of experience, you will be getting about Rs. 19,000-21,000 per month.
When you acquire about 7-8 years of experience, you can earn about Rs. 25,000-30,000 or even more per month.
After 12-15 years of experience, you can earn about Rs. 30,000-35,000 or more per month.
Career Progression in Construction Laboratory Technician Profession
You may grow through roles like Senior Laboratory Technician, Quality Technician, Site Supervisor, Head Quality Technician, Chief Laboratory Technician, Laboratory Supervisor etc.
What does industry trends say – Future Prospects
You can expect a bright future in this field as the industry growth prospects are encouraging. It is estimated that India’s real estate market will reach a market size of $180 billion by 2020. It is also estimated that India will become the third largest construction market globally by 2030, due to its contribution to GDP (Gross Domestic Product) which will increase to 15% by 2030. India’s construction industry expected to rise to become about $1 trillion by 2025. It will also be one of the largest employers in 2022, and hire about 75 million people. So, the sector is looking for massive growth in the future.
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