Category Archives: Energy Jobs

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Westar Energy Jobs: Availability, Salaries, & More

The energy field is increasingly growing, leading to the creation of many jobs. When job demand surpasses the available supply, the level of compensation for those qualified to fill in-demand positions naturally goes up. If energy is your field, or even business, accounting, sales, management, or social media marketing, then the energy field may have potential jobs for you, Westar Energy jobs included. In this article, we’ll explore a variety of energy jobs to demonstrate the potential income, earnings, and benefits you can realize, and the requirements to do so.

Westar Energy Jobs Available

company in the middle of the field

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There are a great many Westar Energy jobs currently available on the market. The following is a description of a number of available positions to demonstrate the breadth of potential occupations one might pursue with Westar Energy to find beneficial employment with a company that, as we’ll explore below, is committed to the betterment of their employees and to the communities they serve. Each job we’ll present below will be considered in terms of the essential duties of the job and the key requirements to obtain each one.

Internal Auditor

a woman Internal Auditor

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The internal auditor is tasked with conducting, documenting, and reporting the outcome of the results of internal audits of a variety of operations in Westar Energy. This is accomplished through the use of the department’s risk-based audit methodology in addition to Sarbanes-Oxley reviews and testing. Improvements upon operational risk management are expected.

To acquire this job, a bachelor’s degree with a focus on business, accounting, or finance is required, in addition to 1-3 years of related experience, with internships potentially counting towards such requirements. Persons applying for the role must have an understanding of fundamental control practices while also being able to work within a team environment.

Journeyman Lineman Splicer

greyscale photo of two Journeyman Lineman Splicer

Image via flickr

This role among the Westar Energy jobs explored in this article requires either completion of the Journeyman Lineman - Splicer at KCP&L program or have documentation to prove completion of a recognized apprenticeship program for Journeyman Lineman Splicer. One may also obtain a job in this role if they have at least 2 years of work experience as a Journeyman Lineman.

Such experience must include documented and satisfactory performance of all standard tasks and responsibilities of a distribution lineman working with a public electrical utility or a recognized utility contracting company. Class A CLD and D.O.T. certification is required for this job.

Automobile Mechanic

Automobile Mechanic

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This position for Westar Energy jobs requires that the employee effectively complete repairs and maintenance work on the fleet vehicles and equipment of Westar Energy. Repairs on cars and trucks are central to the role, as well as modifications to equipment. The ability to perform inspections on trucks, tractors, automobiles, and other mechanical and tool equipment is also necessary. The ability to perform all functions required is necessary, as well as a Class A CDL license.

Someone in this role must also pass a Construction & Skilled Trades (CAST) Test. 5 years of experience on hydraulic, automotive, and truck equipment is necessary, and the employee must also complete a company-sponsored apprentice automobile mechanic program.

Originator

man in a suit looking straightforward

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The originator role of Westar Energy jobs is part of the marketing group, which offers a high-energy, team-oriented work environment, in addition to strong salaries and benefits packages. The role must generate structured transactions as well as energy management agreements (EMA) with wholesale customers in addition to other energy partners within both the mid- and long-term energy markets. The applicant must be knowledgeable of RTO/ISO developments and how they affect mid- and long-term energy products.

Candidates must have significant relationships and contacts across the US power markets and customer segments. This role requires a bachelor’s degree, preferably with a degree in business, engineering, or a related field. Additionally, the candidate is suggested to have a minimum of 5 years of experience in wholesale transactional work in origination. The candidate must be able to exhibit the ability to understand and align with all risk management policies and procedures in the company.

Qualitative Analyst Sr/Principal

corporate man infront of a bookshelf

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This role is responsible for supporting the manager of qualitative analysis and research by preparing a variety of budget, risk monitoring, and portfolio tracking reports. This role is responsible for the completion of a variety of tasks through the development and management of models through the use of a variety of modeling techniques in order to identify option value, variance, and risks linked to the power and fuel portfolio of Westar Energy.

To qualify for the senior analyst role, 6 years of experience are necessary for energy or commodities training, integrated resource planning, origination marketing, finance, or system development, while 8 years are required for the principal analyst position. A bachelor degree in finance, business, engineering, physics, or another related field is the minimum for the senior analyst. A master’s degree is required for the principal analyst position, although a doctorate degree is preferred by the company for both positions.

Real-Time Trader

person typing on her laptop

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This position for Westar Energy jobs is a part of the bulk power marketing department. This role is responsible for updating intra-day trading and for supporting DA and RTO market submittals for unit offers, with parameters based on resource operations and market conditions. This position is also responsible for making sure the CROW outage system is updated with the outage and de-rate information. The real-time trader also monitors the day ahead and real-time Reliability Unit Commitment process, communicating results through generating system operators and energy management customers.

This role requires a minimum of 1 year of direct power marketing experience, and it is preferred that the real-time trader has a bachelor’s degree in business, engineering, mathematics, economics, or another related field.

Supervisor Of Wind Operations

businessman discussing while his hand raised

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This role, available exclusively in Nashville, KS, reports directly to the Manager of Wind Site Operations. The selected candidate is ultimately assigned to manage a 20-turbine Clipper C96 Wind Site, a Westar Site Supervisor, and a number of technicians who are contracted to perform both scheduled and unscheduled repairs on commercial wind turbines. The turbines use prudent utility and wind industry practices. A technical degree or engineering degree, in addition to prior experience with high voltage switching, is noted as being highly preferred for this position.

Average Salaries Of Westar Energy Positions

Westar Energy jobs pay a range of salaries or hourly wages depending upon the task being performed. The salaries listed below are taken from Glassdoor, which averages salaries that are provided by current and former employees of the company. While some of the job salaries provided below were not presented above, they were included to present a general idea of how much the employees make in Westar Energy jobs.

For hourly work there is generally solely the hourly rate, while the full-time positions come with full benefits, in addition to the annual salaries listed below:

  • Accountant: $49k - $66k
  • Customer Service Representative: $16/hr - $22/hr
  • Engineer: $52k - $79k
  • Internal Auditor: $70k
  • Lineman: $59k - $78k
  • Qualitative Analyst Sr/Principal: $45k - $88k
  • Supervisor: $86k - $92k
  • Technical Specialist: $55k - $57k

Why Work For Westar Energy?

energy company environment

Image via flickr

Westar Energy jobs are offered by a company that takes pride in their employees and in the way they are treated. Westar Energy jobs are staffed by “our family of dedicated employees who are also our neighbors and friends”. The organization has presented a commitment to providing a friendly, safe, and exciting work environment that encompasses opportunities to grow with the company. The organization has a supportive culture that facilitates the development of employees so they become better able to serve the company and their community.

Ethical And Supportive Workplace

group photo of linemen

Image via flickr

One of the key reasons to pursue an available position among the Westar Energy jobs explored above is the ethical workplace and environment that is provided to employees. Not only are employees treated well and with respect and appreciated like family, but the company has a commitment to ethics. Since its founding, the organization has been committed to “maintaining the highest ethical standards and building respectful relationships within our organization”. By maintaining the highest ethical standards, Westar Energy jobs are appealing.

By establishing a company with a sustainable structure that is rooted in an uncompromised commitment to integrity, fairness, trust, diversity, and ethics, Westar Energy has held a leading position in the industry for some time. To support team-building, the company presents a number of sponsored events to allow employees the ability to have fun together while enhancing their communities through organized volunteering at some events. The company invites you to apply for Westar Energy jobs, stating “Join us and be part of the Westar Energy family - you will always feel at home here".

Conclusion

Westar Energy jobs are highly appealing options within the energy field. They present the ability to engage with a positive company with a supportive environment and community-oriented mission. The company presents employees with sponsored events for fun and organized volunteering work to give back to the community. The salaries are also generous, which is, of course, the most important consideration for most individuals when taking a job. Westar Energy jobs pay.

For more information on energy jobs and companies, check back to the Energy Job Blog for ongoing articles and updates.

solar panels

Department of Energy Jobs: Availability, Salaries, & More

The United States Department of Energy is involved in a wide range of tasks related to energy production, energy conservation, and waste disposal. In fact, much of the work of the department is related to nuclear energy. Jobs with federal agencies like the Department of Energy are popular because of the job security, research budgets, and often strong salaries that come with the roles. In particular, Department of Energy jobs offer men and women the opportunity to be engaged in work that is exciting, rewarding, and important both on a national and an international level.

What Is the Department of Energy?

windmills

Image Source: Pixabay

The United States Department of Energy, or DOE for short, is a cabinet-level department of the Government of the United States. Although the specific tasks of the department will be addressed in greater detail later, this federal department is concerned with various policies and management activities related to energy in the United States. The Department of Energy is headed by the United States Secretary of Energy, who is appointed by the President of the United States. The department is based out of Washington, D.C. although there are numerous laboratories nationwide.


In fact, much of the work of the Department of Energy is conducted through its system of national laboratories and technology centers. These laboratories are a direct result of the great research work that came out of the U.S. war effort in the 1940s. Much of the work of the national laboratories is related to nuclear technology or nuclear waste, although other aspects of energy management in the United States are also covered. There are seventeen national laboratories operated by the United States Department of Energy:


  • Ames Laboratory in Ames, Iowa
  • Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois
  • Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York
  • Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Illinois
  • Idaho National Laboratory in Idaho Falls, Idaho
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, California
  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California
  • Los Alamos National Laboratory in Los Alamos, New Mexico
  • National Energy Technology Laboratory in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Morgantown, West Virginia; and Albany, Oregon
  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee
  • Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Washington
  • Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory in Princeton, New Jersey
  • Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico and Livermore, California
  • Savannah River National Laboratory in Aiken, South Carolina
  • SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory in Menlo Park, California
  • Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility in Newport News, Virginia

The national laboratories were not always administered by the Department of Energy. The laboratories were first administered by the Atomic Energy Commission and later the Energy Research and Development Administration, and finally the DOE. The oldest of the national laboratories is the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory in Berkeley, California, which dates to 1931. At present, the Department of Energy is headed by Rick Perry, who was formerly Governor of Texas.


It may come as a surprise to some that the United States Department of Energy actually grew out of the efforts of the Manhattan Project in World War II. The Manhattan project was the effort to create an atomic bomb. The project had some input from the United Kingdom and Canada, as well as the United States Army Corps of Engineers. The Atomic Energy Commission was created immediately after the war, in 1946, to supervise nuclear energy projects.  Although the Atomic Energy Commission no longer exists, it gave way to some important organizations, including:

  • Energy Research and Development Administration
  • Nuclear Regulatory Commission
  • Department of Energy

The Department of Energy was founded by President Jimmy Carter in 1977, a few years after the Oil Crisis of 1973. The 1973 Oil Crisis was an oil embargo directed against several countries, including the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada, due to political events at the time. The main result of the oil embargo was that the cost of oil quadrupled from about $3 a barrel to $12. This placed increased importance on energy, as an area of federal concern, and eventually led to the foundation of the Department of Energy, into which the Energy Research and Development Administration, along with a few other bureaus, was consolidated.


Although nuclear energy, which was the primary focus of the predecessor agencies of the Department of Energy, remains an important area of concern, the department is involved in several other areas, including solar energy. The National Renewal Energy Laboratory is involved in research with solar and other renewable sources of energy, and it operates programs in conjunction with the department to encourage the use of solar energy as a renewable energy alternative to oil and other fossil fuel energy sources.


The department has faced its fair share of controversy. It should not come as a surprise that there is some measure of secrecy associated with nuclear technology, both as it pertains to nuclear power generation and nuclear weapons. This necessitates that workers, especially those involved in the nuclear weapons side of things, are able to keep classified information classified. Alleged leaks of information to foreign rivals have garnered national attention. It is important that future workers in Department of Energy jobs understand the importance of confidentiality.


As mentioned, the Department of Energy is not only involved in nuclear energy work. Future workers in Department of Energy jobs can work in various sites and capacities, depending on their own area of training, skills, or the needs of the department. The department is involved in the following areas pertaining to the national energy needs and interests of the United States:

  • Production of nuclear reactors for the Navy
  • National nuclear weapons program
  • Domestic energy conservation and production
  • Energy research and renewable energy
  • Human Genome Project and other genomics initiatives
  • Radioactive waste disposal

Department of Energy Jobs and Salaries

woman checking

Image Source: Pixabay

One of the great things about the United States DOE is that it offers positions in a wide variety of roles and workers in Department of Energy jobs can expect to work with professionals and administrative personnel in a wide range of disciplines. A small sample of Department of Energy jobs includes the following positions:

  • Accountant
  • Budget Analyst
  • Civil Engineer
  • Energy Project Specialist
  • General Engineer
  • Internet Technology (Computer Specialist
  • Geologist
  • Physical Scientist
  • Materials Engineer

It should not come as a surprise that many of the positions involve fields in science and engineering, like chemists and chemical engineers, physical scientists, geologists, and materials engineers. There professionals would be expected at an agency whose work is focused on new ways to conserve energy, on waste disposal, on renewable energy, and on the day-to-day operations and research associated with nuclear energy technology.


The salaries for Department of Energy jobs will vary based on a number of factors, not least of which is the specific title and requirements for the role. As previously mentioned, workers in Department of Energy jobs are involved both in professional occupations associated with advanced training as well as administrative roles and more hands-on, in the trenches work. It is estimated that of the approximately 15,000 open positions in the department, about 40% are professionals with advanced degrees and training, with most of the rest being workers in administrative roles.


In terms of the day-to-day work of employees in Department of jobs, this will naturally vary by the role, but much of the management and operation of facilities owned by the department is undertaken by workers in these Department of Energy jobs. Some department facilities may be operated by contractors, with DOE workers responsible only for the management and administration. Other facilities and offices are directly operated by the department and staffed by its employees.


As an example of a position for which there are Department of Energy jobs available is Materials Engineer. Pay for roles is standardized across federal agencies with salary falling within a range. The range for Material Engineers across all federal agencies is $87,252 to $113,428, which compares well with salaries for these professionals in other industries. Indeed, workers in Department of Energy Jobs may earn as much as or more than their colleagues in private industry.

How to Get a Job at the Department of Energy

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Men and women interested in Department of Energy jobs have a number of resources that they can use. Many jobs can be applied for online, just as one would when applying for work at private companies or other organizations. Typical workers at the department and other federal departments are required to meet certain qualifications in order to be considered for the role. These qualifications encompass the area of education (minimum degree held), experience, knowledge, and occasionally possession of a professional license or certificate.

Conclusion

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Department of Energy jobs are open to workers who are interested in the exciting and important work of addressing our nation’s energy needs. Workers at the department come from a variety of backgrounds, with nearly half of the workers being professionals engaged in a number of occupations necessary to the department’s work. With the promise of stable employment and a wide number of locations nationwide to choose from, the Department of Energy represents an attractive career choice for many.


Featured Image via Pixabay

Xcel Energy manhole

Xcel Energy Jobs: Availability, Salaries, & More

Looking for an exciting career that you can be proud of? Want plenty of room for advancement and good compensation? A job at Xcel Energy may be exactly what you’ve been searching for.

As the energy industry grows and changes, opportunities to innovate and create with expanding energy companies are arising quickly. Xcel Energy jobs are numerous and varied. Positions range from entry-level jobs to corporate leadership careers and are available in 8 different states.  The company is seeking applicants with a huge range of skills and experience levels: from high school graduates on up to seasoned managers and directors.  

What Is Xcel Energy?

Xcel Energy is a customer-focused producer of clean, reliable energy that proudly powers homes and businesses across the West and Midwest. This Minneapolis-based company’s mission is to “provide our customers the safe, clean, reliable energy services they want and value at a competitive price.”  

Xcel Energy is the product of a merging between three predecessor companies, Northern States Power and Southwestern Public Service Company, which were established in the 1890s, and Public Service Company of Colorado, which opened its doors in the 1920s. Clearly, Xcel Energy has a legacy of experience in the area to lean on.    

Since its establishment in 2000, Xcel Energy has become an industry leader in renewable energy sources and reducing carbon emissions with one of the most ambitious green energy plans in the industry. By the year 2027, the company plans to retire 40% of its coal units and replace them with wind and solar energy.  By 2022, the company is projected to be 61% carbon free by using a combination of renewable energy sources including wind, solar, and nuclear energy.  Just since 2005, Xcel Energy has reduced its total water consumption by 40% and its total carbon emissions by 35%.  

With its focus on community, Xcel Energy is a rewarding place to work. The company finds balance and success by promoting environmental stewardship, customer satisfaction, and a respectful and motivating environment for its employees.  Xcel Energy facilitates safety campaigns which have lowered the rate of accidental dig-ins to underground wires and pipes by 33% and the number of workplace injuries by 58% since 2009.  They are also one of the most reliable power suppliers in the country with customers having power continuously for 99.9% of 2017.  Further, Xcel was recognized for two consecutive years by the Human Rights Campaign as a Best Place to Work for LGBT Equality.

Available Company Positions

man installing solar panel

There is a variety of Xcel Energy jobs available in the following states: North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas.  For the majority of the jobs listed below, more than one vacancy exists.  

Xcel Energy appreciates the service of our country’s veterans, and value the unique experience and skills veterans offer the company.  Ten percent of the company’s new hires are veterans!  On the website, there is an option for veterans to apply to a pool position, which connects applicants to Xcel Energy’s Veteran Recruiter.  Veterans must have served in a branch of the U.S. Armed Forces and have at least a high school diploma.

Internships at Xcel Energy

Xcel Energy offers internships to college students.  Students currently enrolled in classes are invited to apply to an enriching opportunity to test and hone their skills in a project-based atmosphere.


  • Nuclear Engineering Intern
  • Engineering Intern
  • Electrical Engineering Intern
  • Business Intern
  • Internal Auditor Intern
  • EMS Coordinator Intern
  • Regulatory Administrative Business Intern
  • Business Systems Intern
  • Engineering Intern within Transmission Project Management Department
  • Distribution Design & Operations Intern
  • GIS Intern
  • Entry-level Xcel Energy Jobs

  • Customer Service Specialist
  • Customer Care Clerk
  • Product Developer
  • Corporate Xcel Energy Jobs

  • Senior Budget Analyst
  • Communications Assistant 
  • RSA Archer Support Analyst
  • Solution Architect (including Senior positions)
  • Sr. Accounting/Financial Analyst
  • Systems Administrators and Analyst (including Senior positions)
  • Compliance Consultant 
  • Senior Internal Auditor
  • Network Operations Director 
  • Senior Principal Risk Management Analyst 
  • Social Media Manager
  • Social Media Communication Consultant 
  • Network Engineer
  • Load Management Analyst 
  • Regulatory Administrator 
  • Security and Compliance Consultant 
  • Channel Development Manager
  • Product Developer
  • Call Center Associate
  • Regulatory Accounting Manager 
  • Endpoint Security Systems Administrator
  • CIP Functional Consultant 
  • Accounting/Financial Consultant
  • Field and Skilled Labor Xcel Energy Jobs


  • Instructor Operations (including Senior and Principal positions)
  • Operations Manager
  • Plant Electrician Specialist
  • Medical Technician
  • Workforce Relations Specialist
  • Leadership Excellence Manager
  • Category Manager
  • Contract Management Consultant
  • Senior Energy Supply Asset Analyst 
  • Planner Buyer
  • Operations Supervisor
  • Designer/Associate Designer
  • Functional Consultant
  • Network Operations Director
  • Resource Planning Analyst
  • Control Room Supervisor-in-Training
  • Senior Engineer
  • Originator/Senior Originator 
  • Sr. Energy Trader
  • Fleet Project Scheduler
  • Program Manager 
  • Maintenance Supervisor
  • Construction Lead
  • Apprentice Plant Attendant 
  • Electrical Substation Construction Operations Supervisor
  • Senior Safety & Training Consultant 
  • Operations Procedure Writer
  • Associate Supply Chain Analyst 
  • Sales Accountant Specialist 
  • Outdoor Lighting Designer
  • Electrical Equipment Tester
  • Heavy Equipment Operator
  • Specialized Trade Xcel Energy Jobs

  • Distribution Lineman Apprentice
  • Sourcing Project Specialist (including Associate positions)
  • Substation Foreman 
  • Transmission Control Principal Engineer
  • Electrician Apprentice
  • Systems Analyst
  • Technician Specialist
  • Senior Mechanical Engineer
  • Substation Helper
  • IAM Specialist/Engineer (including Senior positions)
  • IVVO Engineer
  • Project Controls Specialist, Nuclear
  • Energy Efficiency Engineer
  • Leadership Xcel Energy Jobs

  • Payroll Manager
  • Functional Analyst
  • Cyber Intelligence Analyst
  • AMI Meter Analyst
  • Material Handlers
  • Product Portfolio Manager (including Senior positions)
  • Training Supervisor Operations
  • Material Operations Supervisor
  • Cost - Analysis Estimator
  • Senior IT Service Delivery Manager 
  • IT Project Manager
  • Technical Business Analyst
  • Design & Construction Director
  • Senior Rate Analyst
  • Average Salaries Per Position

    man doing a routine inspection

    Below, known salaries for positions within Xcel Energy are listed alphabetically by position title. This information was obtained through payscale.com. Compensation is competitive within the industry and demonstrates a company-wide respect for employees at all level.  

    Accounting Analyst:

    $38,614 - $72,710
    Administrative Assistant: $27,285 - $58,733
    Assistant General Counsel: $118,147 - $234,396
    Associate Product Manager: $57,251 - $112,459
    Category Manager:

    $64,581 - $115,548
    Civil Engineer:

    $47,888 - $81,492
    Compensation Analyst: $50,291 - $79,860
    Compliance Officer:

    $60,031 - $130,524
    Construction Superintendent:

     $74,988 - $164,188
    Customer Service Specialist: $23,804 - $60,209
    Data Analyst:

    $37,733 - $97544
    Director of Operations: $121,942 - $254,780
    Electrical Designer:

    $37,599 - $87,587
    Electrical Engineer:

     $40,268 - $115,222
    Employee Communications Consultant:

    $60,804 - $119, 362
    Energy Engineer:

    $49,252 - $78,511
    Energy Power Distribution: $67,220 - $93,543
    Environmental Analyst: $40,905 - $89,780
    Executive Assistant:

    $48,505 - $79,461
    Field Operations Manager: $73,086 - $147,422
    Financial Analyst:

    $43,831 - $85,513
    Gas Fitter:

    $45,268 - $111,142
    Geographic Information Systems Analyst:

    $32,654 - $56,363
    Health Physicist:

    $70,264 - $135,327
    Instrumentation & Controls Technician:

    $41,690 - $96,177
    Journeyman Lineman: $52,370 - $143,663
    Legal Analyst:

    $49,256 - $92,126
    Legal Secretary:

    $38,378 - $69,833
    Lineman:

    $36,659 - $87,066
    Maintenance & Engineering Manager:

    $76,909 - $150,983

    Maintenance Mechanic: $43,775 - $106,093
    Maintenance Supervisor/Superintendent: $53,791 - $151,344
    Marketing Assistant:

    $23,399 - $54,078
    Mechanical Engineering: $51,660 - $106,507
    Meteorologist:

    $62,401 - $126,140
    Meter Reader:

    $36,444 - $89,080
    Nuclear Engineer:

    $63,079 - $125,858
    Operations Manager:

    $61,794 - $168,664
    Operations Superintendent: $43,524 - $111,445
    Plant Supervisor:

    $47,332 - 100,718
    Power Plant Operator: $41,310 - $91,789
    Power System Operator: $58,033 - $103,654
    Project Coordinator, general: $35,417 - $73-232
    Project Coordinator, IT: $45,875 - $85,067
    Project Manager, general: $48,553 - $124,381
    Project Manager, engineering:

    $69,013 - $168,826
    Project Manager, IT:

    $60,903 -$120,606
    Regulatory Administrator: $40,596 - $79,200
    Safety Consultant:

    $47,080 - $124,283
    Senior Accountant:

    $63,037 - $101,359
    Senior Budget Analyst: $57,389 - $116,945
    Senior Business Analyst: $70,567 - $163,341
    Senior Electrical Engineer: $78,121 - $144,722
    Senior Financial Analyst: $65,190 - $102,669
    Senior Human resources Generalist:

    $54,174 - $100,143
    Senior Systems Analyst: $63,410 - $136,591
    Senior Administrative Assistant:

    $36,598 - $73,806
    Staff Engineer:

    $52,289 - $101,900
    Systems Analyst:

    $52,952 - $111,504
    Transmission-Line Engineer: $66,964 - $100,686

    Conclusion

    group of men working on a line post

    Countless people across America are searching for the career that they love. Most people are looking for a career and a workplace that they can be proud of.  Xcel Energy goes to great lengths to be that kind of workplace — a company that values the environment, that seeks to build community through safety initiatives and employee diversity, and that provides a reliable, affordable product to its customers.  

    Whether you are a new graduate seeking to stake your place in the world, or a long-time veteran of the industry, an Xcel Energy job could be exactly what you’ve been hoping for. Xcel Energy is a well-established company in the West and Midwest United States with strong values that make their business successful. Even if you are not quite ready to apply, the company offers an online talent community that provides interested prospective applicants updates on opportunities that match their skills and invitations to company events.  Job listings can be searched by title, skill level, or location.  

    A solid mission, competitive compensation, and plenty of room for upward mobility make this company worth considering.    

    Find more information and apply for Xcel Energy jobs on the company’s website, xcelenergy.com.  

    solar panel

    Should I Consider Using Flexible Solar Panels?

    Solar panels can be used for renewable energy since they harness the sun's energy to generate power that can run industries or a home's equipment and lighting. The use of solar panels supplements energy needs, and thus provides an opportunity for homeowners to save on energy costs. The technology is advancing rapidly each year and new developments, such as flexible solar panels, are constantly being released and improved upon.

    Whether it is powering the Tesla Gigafactory or providing a reading light in your own living room, solar energy saves money for energy consumers. New flexible solar panels represent a great advancement in renewable energy. But, what are flexible solar panels? This article will walk you through the basics and benefits of flexible solar panels.

    What Are Flexible Solar Panels?

    silicon wafers

    Standard polycrystalline or monocrystalline solar panels are typically made of silicon wafers. They are about 200 micrometers thick, which is slightly thicker than a human hair.

    To make a “flexible” solar panel, engineers would have to slice the silicon wafers to just a few micrometers. This then would enable the wafers to be ultra-thin, giving solar panels the uniquely convenient property of being flexible.

    Flexible solar panels have been around for a while, but they were limited in their flexibility because of the brittleness of conventional electrodes used within the panels. Recently, MIT researchers developed a new method for making the solar panels, and it represented a giant leap in the technology.

    Instead of trying to slice down traditional silicon for their solar panel electrodes, MIT researchers found a way they could instead use organic solar cells for graphene electrodes. Graphene is transparent and flexible, meaning it can be used to develop thinner, more stable and flexible solar panels than the ones we used previously.


    Thin Film Solar Panels

    Current flexible solar panels that most homeowners can get their hands on fall under the category of “thin film panels.”

    A thin film solar panel consists of layers over 300 times smaller than standard silicon solar panels. This makes them thinner and can even make the panels somewhat flexible. They are also lightweight and durable, making them an intriguing option for supplying energy for different needs.

    THIN FILM SOLAR PANELS

    Although more flexible and suitable for certain projects, the flexible solar panels have a lower efficiency in converting solar energy into useable power than rigid silicon-based panels. This, perhaps, is the most common obstacle faced by the product when it is compared to classic solar panels.

    The efficiency rating for the average polycrystalline or monocrystalline solar panel is about 14-17%. For thin solar panels, the efficiency is reduced slightly to between 11% and 13%.

    The lower efficiency of the flexible panels implies you will need more of them to produce the same amount of energy as traditional solar panels. This can be a barrier to some solar projects, particularly those with limited roof space for installation. Another downside is that they are not a good fit for many home rooftop solar projects, because there may not be enough roof space to produce the desired amount of energy.

    If you have ample space or are just looking for a supplemental energy production boost, then we feel the just slightly lower efficiency can be overlooked — especially when you consider how many benefits these flexible panels yield.


    Uses

    Flexible solar panels can be used in virtually all applications that one could use conventional panels. You can use them for:

    • Low-cost, off-grid PV systems for cabins and homes
    • Their portability makes them useful on-the-go for boats, RVs, autos, etc.
    • Can be used to charge solar batteries
    • Technology can be incorporated into new solar energy consumer products

    Benefits of Flexible Solar Panels

    satellite

    The main benefit of a flexible solar panel is its versatility and ability to fit many types of solar projects. For instance, if your home's roof cannot bear the heavy load of traditional solar panels because of structural concerns, then lightweight flexible panels are your solution. Flexible solar panels will not compromise the structural integrity of your home as they can be shaped to fit the surface. They can even be installed easily on unconventional structures, such as carports.

    From a financial standpoint, flexible solar panels require less labor to install, so your cost of installation is likely to be less than it would be if you had used the typically heavy and bulky classic panels that require heavy-duty roof mounting systems.

    The lightweight and versatile nature of these panels make them portable, which is beneficial during transportation. The flexible panels can also be folded and rolled, something that is impossible for conventional, rigid solar panels.

    Typically, solar panels are manufactured using printing machines that capitalize on the roll-to-roll method. This enables rapid, mass production. Manufacturing flexible panels is affordable compared to conventional solar panels. Besides, the material consumption is low and is recyclable after the life cycle ends. The market for organic solar panels is developing. It is expected that the operational life cycle of solar panels in a few years will support many applications.

    Due to their portability and durability, the flexible solar panels are best for smaller solar projects where they may experience wear and tear that would otherwise not occur on stationary roofs. Their durability and reduced weight make them a perfect fit for smaller, mobile solar projects that do not need large amounts of energy, such as on boats or RVs.

    Why Should I Consider Using Flexible Solar Panels?

    solar panel and mobile phone

    Amazon.com sells many types of flexible solar panels at different prices. Ask yourself if you could benefit from a flexible solar panel based on your energy needs.

    When shopping for a flexible solar panel that will best serve your purposes, look for value for your money. The performance of the solar panel varies according to the quality of the solar cells used, the material used in laminating them and the rigor of the assembly process.

    The following are four things you must consider before purchasing a flexible solar panel:

    • Shorter lifespans
    • Quality and efficiency
    • Product knowledge
    • Durability


    Shorter Lifespans

    Flexible panels have a shorter lifespan than traditional panels. If you need a solar panel that will last a very long time, then the flexible panel may not be your best option. In fact, many of the low-quality flexible solar panels currently on the market will only 1-3 years. Aside from that, the retailer may offer no warranty.

    One decisive factor in determining the lifespan of a flexible solar panel is to check its coating material, which is mostly the preferred ETFE (fluorine-based polymer) or less-preferred PET (polyester-based plastic.) PET-laminated panels are expected to last for 5 years, while ETFE can last up to a decade.


    Quality and Efficiency

    Sunpower’s Maxeon multi-layered cell technology is the best quality solar cell available in the market. It has an efficiency of up to 24.3%, which means the product can provide 35% more power than conventional cells.

    Conventional cells have exposed metal components that can be vulnerable to corrosion. This might be an issue to consider, especially if your home is near salt water. If you are close to a marine environment, then it is best to consider alternative energy sources. If you want energy efficiency, then flexible solar panels are not the best option.


    Product Knowledge

    If you are looking for a flexible solar panel that is an inexpensive method for charging your tablet or phone, go for the PET-laminated panels. While the efficiency is 24%, remember you will get less value for more energy-efficient cells.

    If you are looking for a flexible solar panel for camping, your RV, your boat, your refrigerator, battery, engine starter or the like, then choose ETSE-laminated panels. They are waterproof, fire-resistant, reliable and durable.


    Durability

    To ensure that your flexible solar panel has a long lifespan, you need to purchase quality panels from the start. You need to know the materials used in producing the panel. Do a little research first.

    Do not buy a solar panel that has any physical damage, such as cracks or scratches, as these will reduce the lifespan and durability of the panel.

    Additionally, you'll get more use and life out of your solar panel if you regularly clean it for optimal performance. Do not let dust or dirt accumulate, because these components can cause damage to your panel.

    And, if you are traveling and do not need to use your flexible solar panel, then it is best to use a protective cover to extend its lifespan.

    Conclusion

    solar panels

    Solar panels are made of silicon wafers sliced down to just a few micrometers wide. This makes them ultra-thin and flexible. Flexible solar panels are being improved in drastically in the near future by MIT researchers, who have discovered the applications of organic solar cells for graphene electrodes. These organic solar cell electrodes will lead to panels that are even thinner, more stable and flexible than ever before.

    Current flexible solar panels fall under the category of “thin-film panels,” and are 300 times smaller than standard silicon solar panels, making them more flexible, lightweight and durable. Flexible solar panels fit many types of solar projects, such as supplying power to RVs or boats, or even charging batteries or your phone.

    A flexible solar panel, which is less costly to install than traditional panels, will not compromise the structural integrity of your home. They are lightweight and versatile, making them highly portable and useful during trips. Manufacturing flexible panels is affordable compared to conventional solar panels, and the material used is recyclable after the lifespan of the panel is complete.

    Before buying a solar panel, you need to consider the durability, cells used, quality and efficiency, lamination used and how to improve durability.

    Renewable Energy Jobs and Careers

    With the massive increase in interest in renewable energy, many new jobs and careers are appearing in this industry. We will discuss several of the major categories, and provide some of the issues that said areas will be focused on in the near future. If the immediate future is a bigger concern for you, you can look for current jobs listing posted here.

     

    Research

    Currently there is extensive research occurring on many aspects of renewable energy, such as how to allow it to better suit our needs a modern, industrialized country, as well as on how to squeeze the maximum possible efficiency out of all of the latest developments and breakthroughs. Another large area of research that isn’t directly considered renewable energy research, but that directly impacts the industry, is the research of new and more efficient batteries. With some recent dire predictions of the world’s supply of lithium running low, especially as Elon Musk plans to dramatically increase production of electric cars, with his recently introduced affordable Tesla Model 3. Lithium is a main component of our most energy dense variety of battery, the lithium-polymer battery, and with lithium-sulfur batteries being the main candidate for replacing LiPo batteries as the next step in commercial battery production, a replacement for lithium is a big issue that needs researching.

     

    Engineer

    While the research is producing many breakthroughs in renewable energy, it’s the engineers that take these brilliant new solutions and develop commercially viable ways to use produce them. As many of the new breakthroughs feature exotic materials that are hard to work with and produce, the engineers of tomorrow have their work cut out for them as they work tirelessly to apply these ideas into making this world a better place.

     

    Install and Maintenance

    Once all the research and development is said and done, it’s the job of the installers to allow the general use of these products and to help ensure the implementation of these new ideas goes along smoothly, and stays on the pace needed to help to protect the environment as these new, better technologies replace the old, polluting ones. Once installed, it comes down to the men and women who maintain these sources of renewable energy to ensure the electricity keeps flowing and electric cars keep humming along. Many maintenance crews face new and unique challenges they won’t see anywhere else working in any other fields. These include making sure the giant blades on wind turbines keep on working properly, usually hundreds of feet above the ground, and ensuring that the ethanol used to run cars in a more eco-friendly manner continues to be properly refined and distributed.

    Emerging Energy Job Markets

    Emerging Energy Job Markets

    The energy industry is rapidly growing from regulated utilities to independent energy producers and it is because of this why the job market for energy careers is also growing. This is a good thing since there are a lot of people who are in need of a good-paying job. And because of the new publicity that is now going around and becoming popular to students and potential workers, which is the “clean energy industry”, more and more people are getting attracted to the idea of being a part of this positive factor, ergo, the budding workforce of the industry.

    Having a career in the energy industry can potentially make one earn more than those who are working in a more common industry and what’s good is that there are a lot of career opportunities to choose from now.

    Energy Market Trader

    These days, not only does the energy industry need electricians, engineers and the like to be a part of their workforce, they are now also looking for individuals who are highly analytical, coordinated, and have a competitive technical skillset. An energy market trader must possess these things and more in order to deliver the job well.

    Billing Analyst

    For those who are more inclined with clerical-type jobs, the energy industry also has opportunities for those who would want to be billing analysts. They are the ones responsible for ensuring that all standard accounts are billed accurately and on time. Analyst jobs can be found at the costco application.

    Back Office Analyst

    Also like a clerical job, a back office analyst may also take over the job of a billing analyst and is also expected to establish processes, procedures and documentation to validate contract and rate compliance and adherence to internal financial controls. A back office analyst is also expected to answer and resolve customer inquiries and billing disputes is there are any, perform analysis on every issue that may arise, to document every issue and every solution given to the client.

    Sales Representatives / Account Executive

    Just like in any other industry, energy companies also need those people who have good experience with sales and who have the heart for it. The sales representatives are responsible for dealing with the public and making sure that their needs are met and their inquiries are all answered. This is an important job because the sales representative will serve as the face of the company and should be able to perform all demonstration and presentation to the client. The responsibilities of an account executive can be considered the same as that of a sales representative as they make sure that business relationships are cultivated properly. Their tasks also include securing new projects opportunities, sales volume and market share.

    Energy Forecast Analyst

    As the title implies, energy forecast analyst is a post that is responsible for forecasting the forward price curves for energy and its capacity. A person that would be perfect for this post is one that has strong mathematical and quantitative analysis skills. A bachelor’s degree is required for this kind of career.

    Energy Jobs & Careers

    Energy Jobs & Careers

    When talking about energy, this infamous question always arises: where would we be without energy? How will we live our lives without the usual electronics that have now become a part of our daily lives such as television, air condition, and refrigerator? These questions, although obvious, are valid and can instantly make one realize the value of energy in our lives. And as valuable as its role is, the job opportunities that come along with it are just as important.

    The good news about the career opportunities in the energy industry is that there is always a role to fill up which means that there is better opportunity for people to have a good paying job in this industry. Also, not all job opportunities require a bachelor or college degree; a solid career can be achieved with only a high school diploma and dedication with on the job trainings.

    Engineers

    Civil engineers, electrical/electronic engineers, mechanical engineers are usually the posts available for those who have a college degree to show. An associate degree, on the other hand, is needed for those who are aspiring to be an electronic technician, engineering technician, or an industrial engineering technician. These job posts require a high amount of analyses and the ability to translate practical problems into mathematical equations and techniques.

    Repair and Installation Workers

    A career in repair and installation is for someone who likes to work outdoors, who are adept with technology and troubleshooting equipments, and who is not afraid of heights and who can withstand standing for a long period of time. Usually, the posts in this category consists of electrical power line installers, control and valve installers and repairers, electrical and electronic repairers, installation maintenance, and supervisory or managerial positions. You can learn more at the application for subway.

    Production Workers

    A combination of being an operator and a technician, production workers are expected to have high technical skills and are mostly employed in power-plants. The salary in this job post can be considered lucrative and it is because of the high qualifications that it requires. They are the ones responsible for keeping all the equipments in the power-plant in top condition by making sure that they are updated with the latest advancements in technology and by being the first ones to know about an emerging electronic device related to their jobs. They also make sure that they will be able to lead and mandate if ever an emergency occurs. This category include the first-line supervisors and managers, chemical equipment operators, chemical plant and system operators, power distributors and dispatchers, gas plant and power plant operators.

    Construction

    A construction career is also possible to have in the energy industry. When utility systems are being constructed, construction managers, electricians, operating engineers are all needed in order to ensure a smooth and safe workflow. Also included in this category are the construction and building inspectors, plumbers and pipe layers. This can be quite taxing physically because of the utility of heavy power tools and because it is usually done outdoors but nevertheless, just as rewarding and fulfilling as other jobs in a different industry.

    Why Energy Jobs are Important to U.S. Economy

    Why Energy Jobs are Important to U.S. Economy

    Because of the recession, a lot of people have lost their jobs and the ability to have a comfortable lifestyle. Since this has been going on for quite some time now, one cannot help but ask what will it take for the economy to improve and when will this happen? How many more people are to suffer before this recession ends?

    Although the economy has shown signs of improvements and recovery, these have been shallow and slow, and may not even be enough to be considered as an improvement. Unfortunately, these small hints of developments are not enough to prosperously sustain a striving nation. What economists are trying to articulate is that there is a good chance that the economy will improve if only a rise of employment will take place. If more people are employed then more will receive salaries and in turn will be able to pay for taxes.

    Good news is that because of the emerging job market of the energy industry, more and more people are now given the chance to have a career and sustaining pay. The boost of job opportunities is considered to be good news for the economy as this can possibly reduce the number of unemployment in the country. Also, because of the renewable electric technologies that are now getting positive attention, the drive for having a clean energy industry have been attracting the attention of students looking for future jobs and potential workers. If this continues, and job opportunities are seen, experts agree that this can help improve the economy.

    Recent discoveries have been made by experts making the United States the largest producer of oil and natural gas in a few years, and the import of oil in the country have been greatly lessened – an achievement that has been long awaited for about 17 years. This achievement is forecasted to be a huge factor in economic growth and will therefore be reflected in the job opportunities that will be available to the public.

    The nuclear energy industry is also a proud contributor to the emerging energy job market as it provides near-term and lasting employment to the qualified public. Not only that, they also provide a good variety of options for those aspiring to have a job in the industry but are not able to finish a college degree. From construction, manufacturing, to operational, a lot of people will be given the chance to be employed and hired. Among other employers is the much talked about application for   target.

    The large increase of the energy production of the country is surely providing positive effects not only to its employment rate but also to its economy. And apart from the job opportunities, it is also important to note the security that the energy job market can bring. Energy companies are assuring the public that the jobs that they are offering come with a good set of benefits and competitive salary. They also provide options for term or permanent employment and the chance for growth in terms of career within the company is also promising.