Diploma in Plastic Engineering is a 3 years long Diploma certificate course. This course can be pursued by students who have passed 10th standard as well as 12th standard (Science stream- Mathematics group). In this article, you will be reading details about Diploma in Plastic Engineering course. The article covers topics like course details, eligibility criteria, admission process, syllabus, career prospects and salary details.
What is plastic engineering all about? Who is a plastic engineer, what are his/her tasks? What is it like to be a plastic engineer? You will find answers to these questions in the next section.
Plastics Engineering: An Introduction
Plastics Engineering is a branch of engineering that deals with design, processing and manufacturing of all types of plastic products.
We all use plastic products in our day to day lives. From the humble plastic storage bag to pipes carrying water to our houses, the applications of plastic materials are many! Use of plastic materials are not just limited to our homes! They are even used extensively in industries and sectors such as automobile manufacturing, aviation sector, space exploration sector, pharmaceutical sector and building and construction sector.
Plastic is a polymeric material. It has various good properties such as plasticity, insulation property, durability, light weightiness and anti corrosive properties.
The use of a plastic product, to an extent, depends on the properties that it possess. Depending upon the area of application of the plastic product, we enhance/diminish some of the properties mentioned above. For example- plastic used for insulation purpose have high insulation property and temperature tolerance. Plastic material used in automobiles are strong and light in weight at the same time!
The nature and usability of plastic can be changed by manipulating and adjusting its mechanical, chemical, thermal, electrical, barrier and biodegradability properties. Tweaking and tuning such properties help create plastic materials and products that meets/satisfies specific conditions.
A plastic engineer’s main tasks include obtaining plastic products with the desired/specific nature by adjusting its mechanical, electrical, thermal, chemical and barrier properties. Plastic engineers are involved in design, processing and manufacturing of all types of plastic products. They are also trained in using/operating plastic machinery, which are used in plastic processing plants.
Plastic also has some bad properties. Lack of biodegradability is one such property. Thanks to this property, plastic products have contributed greatly to environmental pollution.
Keeping this fact in mind, plastic engineers also work on reducing ecologic footprints of plastic products. This is done through activities like developing and manufacturing degradable plastic products, recycling plastic products and using sustainable and green manufacturing processes.
Economic side of plastic manufacturing is also covered by the branch of plastic engineering. A plastic engineer also ensures that the cost of manufacturing is kept under control. This is done by reducing production cost, raw material cost and recycling.
Let us check out course details now-
Diploma in Plastic Engineering is a Diploma certificate program. This course can be pursued by students who have passed 10th standard as well as 12th standard (Science stream- Mathematics group).
Duration: Course duration is 3 years. In cases of most of the institutes offering this course, the academic program is divided into 6 semesters, with each semester lasting for a period of 6 months.
Few institutes are also known to offer Integrated program- Diploma + B.Tech. Degree in Plastic Engineering.
Diploma in Plastic Engineering course trains students in areas such as- Basic chemistry, Polymer Chemistry, Mould Design, Industrial Training, Plastic Materials and Quality Management.
Students who have passed 10th standard are eligible to pursue this course. This course can also be pursued after completing 10+2 Science stream (Mathematics group)!
Admission process and Colleges
Many polytechnic, technical education and engineering institutes across India are offering this program. Most institutes usually have the ‘direct admission’ or ‘merit based admission’ process. Interested students have to approach the institute and fill up the admission form. Seats will be allotted to deserving students on the basis of marks scored by them in 10th board examination (usually in Mathematics and Science subjects).
I’ve assembled a list of important subjects present in Diploma in Plastic Engineering course. The list can be used to understand the course structure and know more about the core subjects present in this course.
1st semester subjects-
- Engineering Mathematics
- Engineering Physics
- Basic Polymer Chemistry
- Computer Programming and Utilization
- Basics of Mechanical Engineering
2nd semester subjects-
- Engineering Drawing/Graphics
- Basics of Electrical Engineering
- Polymer Chemistry
- Environment Conservation and Hazard Management
- Workshop (Practical)
3rd semester subjects-
- Basic Mould Design
- Plastic Materials
- Mould Fabrication Technology
- Technology for Injecting Moulding
- Compression Transfer and Injection Moulding of Thermose
4th semester subjects-
- Design for Injecting Mould
- Plastic Extrusion Technology
- Hydraulic and Pneumatic Systems
- Process Instrumentation and Maintenance
- Blow Rotational and Thermoforming Process
5th and 6th semesters subjects-
- Industrial Management
- Design for Blow and Thermoforming Moulds
- Mould Fabrication Technology
- Plastic Materials
- Plastic Testing and Quality Management
- Secondary Processing Techniques
- Industrial Visit and Training
- Project Work
Note: This is the syllabus of GTU (Gujarat Technological University). Syllabus and course structure may vary from one University/State to another. However, the core subjects and syllabus will remain the same. Most of the subjects mentioned above have both classroom lectures and practical sessions associated with them. In case of last year (5th and 6th semesters), project work and industrial training are present. Students will have to undertake and complete a project work related to the field of Plastic Engineering, under the guidance of faculty members.
Further studies and PG courses
After completing Diploma in Plastic Engineering program, one may go for Bachelor’s Degree (B.E./B.Tech.) in Plastic Engineering! In most Degree Engineering colleges, certain percentages of seats are reserved for Diploma certificate holders. This entry is known as the lateral entry. Diploma holders with good grade may make use of lateral entry and join B.E./B.Tech. Plastic Engineering program’s 2nd academic year (directly). This way, Diploma holders may make the ‘DtoD’ switch and earn a Bachelor of Engineering/Technology Degree!
After that, one may go for Master’s education or PG Diploma programs. Relevant M.E./M.Tech., M.Sc. and PG Diploma courses will enable one to specialize in disciplines within the Plastic Engineering sector.
If you are interested in management program, you may go for MBA program (after graduation)! After completing Master’s program, if you want to go for further advanced courses, M.Phil. and PhD programs are available in front of you!
Career prospects and job opportunities
Diverse job opportunities are available in front of Plastic Engineers. Both Government and Private sector job openings are available in front of them.
Companies and firms involved in processing, design and manufacturing of plastic materials and products are the prime recruiters of plastic engineers. Polymer processing companies are also known to recruit plastic engineers.
Other than the core sector jobs mentioned above, Oil and Natural Gas companies, Petrochemical companies and refineries also hire plastic engineers. ONGC, OIL and Government operated refineries are some of the well known Government sector recruiters.
Common job profiles available in front of Plastic engineers include-
- Production Engineer
- Quality Control Engineer
- Plant Manager
- Plant Supervisor
- Design Engineer
- Product Engineer
After completing Master’s level course, one will be able to take up teaching job at institutes offering plastic/chemical engineering education. M.Phil. and PhD programs will help one build a career in the research and development sector associated with the field of plastic engineering.
Self employment opportunities also exist in front of plastic engineers. One could start small/medium scale plastic products manufacturing unit, if one has access to decent financial resources. Independent marketing work (of plastic products) can also be done by them.
At start, plastic engineering freshers may earn around 6-15k Rupees per month. Starting salary depends on factors like job profile, profile of the employer and job location.
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