Mining Engineer  What They Do

Just the Facts


Mining and Geological Engineers, including Mining Safety Engineers Career Video



Conducts sub-surface surveys to identify the characteristics of potential land or mining development sites. May specify the ground support systems, processes and equipment for safe, economical, and environmentally sound extraction or underground construction activities. May inspect areas for unsafe geological conditions, equipment, and working conditions. May design, implement, and coordinate mine safety programs.

This career is part of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics cluster Engineering and Technology pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Prepares technical reports for use by mining, engineering, and management personnel.
  • Inspects mining areas for unsafe structures, equipment, and working conditions.
  • Selects or develops mineral location, extraction, and production methods, based on factors such as safety, cost, and deposit characteristics.
  • Selects locations and plans underground or surface mining operations, specifying processes, labor usage, and equipment that will result in safe, economical, and environmentally sound extraction of minerals and ores.
  • Prepares schedules, reports, and estimates of the costs involved in developing and operating mines.
  • Monitors mine production rates to assess operational effectiveness.
  • Supervises, trains, and evaluates technicians, technologists, survey personnel, engineers, scientists or other mine personnel.
  • Examines maps, deposits, drilling locations, or mines to determine the location, size, accessibility, contents, value, and potential profitability of mineral, oil, and gas deposits.
  • Designs, implements, and monitors the development of mines, facilities, systems, or equipment.
  • Tests air to detect toxic gases and recommends measures to remove them, such as installation of ventilation shafts.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Exposed to hazardous equipment such as saws, machinery, or vehicular traffic more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Engineer --
  • Engineering Manager --
  • Geologist -- Studies the solid and liquid matter that constitutes the Earth as well as the processes and history that has shaped it.
  • Mine Engineer --
  • Mine Engineering Manager --
  • Mine Engineering Superintendent --
  • Mine Safety Manager --
  • Planning Engineer --
  • Project Engineer --