A transmission engineer is a type of electrical engineer. Transmission engineers work for electrical power companies, and generally need a bachelor's degree to qualify for entry-level positions. Transmission engineers are called by a couple of different titles, depending on which sector in the electrical power generation industry they work.
Transmission Design Engineers
Transmission design engineers are employed in the wind-power generation industry. According to iSeek Careers, transmission design engineers are sometimes called wind-energy engineers. They design and test wind turbines and the electrical components that power them. They also help to plan the layout of wind farms. Based on estimates of wind speed and direction, transmission design engineers determine optimal locations for the placement of wind farms.
Transmission Planning Engineers
Transmission planning engineers are electrical engineers who design electrical transmission systems. They determine how many electrical substations are needed in order to properly transmit the correct amount of energy to a given number of customers. They also study existing power transmission systems to determine how they can best be expanded, and test power lines and transmission equipment to determine how they perform under specific conditions.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, electrical and electronics engineers of all types earned a median salary of $87,180 per year and a median wage of $41.92 an hour as of 2010. iSeek Careers reports that transmission design engineers employed in the wind-energy industry earned a median wage of $36.79 an hour, while transmission planning engineers earned a median wage of $40.53 an hour.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the American economy to add jobs at a rate of 14 percent in the period between 2010 and 2020. By comparison, jobs for electrical engineers are only expected to grow at a rate of about 7 percent. However, job opportunities for transmission engineers working in electrical power generation should be better than for electrical and electronics engineers working in manufacturing, which has been declining in the United States for decades.
2016 Salary Information for Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Electrical and electronics engineers earned a median annual salary of $96,300 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, electrical and electronics engineers earned a 25th percentile salary of $75,650, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $121,510, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 324,600 people were employed in the U.S. as electrical and electronics engineers.