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Controls Engineering and Physics

  1. Mar 8, 2013 #1
    Hi everyone! I'm a Computer Engineering student, and for the Master Degree i think i would like to proceed my career in Controls Engineering, because i really like the subject, anyway my interests are aerospace, robotics and physics, do you think a controls engineer can have a significant career in these fields ?
    And since i'm really interested in physics, do you think that if i do research in physical modelling for Controls Engineering i can even be considered a physicist or an applied physicist ?

  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 9, 2013 #2
    You will not be considered a physicist. But that's OK.

    I am a registered Controls Engineer. There is plenty of work for people like you or me. You will find that straight physics work is not that common. However, chemical, robotic, and aerospace work is. Don't overlook the more mundane but very essential work such as electric power plants, refineries, assembly lines, food processing, HVAC work, and so on. Yes, it is easy to sneer at such work, but it is typically very steady work that pays reasonably well. There is also plenty of opportunity for advancement if you want to go that route.

    Motion control in particular is getting a lot of attention. Nevertheless, while it is cool to discuss robots, the real work of controlling servos for actuators and non-linear curve compensation for process consistency is much more interesting.
  4. Mar 10, 2013 #3
    yes but anyway since i'm an engineer, i can be considered an applied physicist, if i'm doing research or if i write publications about physics right?
  5. Mar 11, 2013 #4
    Only in your mind.

    But as JakeBrodskyPE said, that's OK.
  6. Mar 11, 2013 #5
    I dont think so. Most people with PhDs in physics dont even become physicists.
  7. Mar 11, 2013 #6
    what about photonics engineering can them be considered some kind of applied physicist ?
  8. Mar 11, 2013 #7
    You are a little too worried about what words other people use to describe you and your job.

    As long as you enjoy what you are doing and are doing well at it, it really doesn't matter what other people call your job at all.
  9. Mar 11, 2013 #8
    Engineering is applied physics. But if you call yourself an applied physicist, all you will get will be puzzled looks.

    Engineering is an old, respectable, and noble profession. Why are you so eager to call yourself something else? Given the scandals of late, it is more respectable than calling yourself an accountant, a lawyer, a journalist, or a politician.
  10. Mar 12, 2013 #9
    well, I really want to study and enhance in physics, and i like to work in the engineering field, but even physics, that's why i would like to be considered a physicist in the society... anyway i think it depends on what we mean by physicist, and anyway, what the people think is important, and for example if i'm an engineer and i'm really good at physics and always get the news on new physics research and write publications about physics, i can't understand why one can't be considered an engineer and a physicist... I think that nobody can give you the title of physicist, it's all about how much you know about it, and if you write publications in that matter... Am I wrong ?
  11. Mar 12, 2013 #10
    Nobody gives you the title "physicist", but the reality is that unless you have a Ph.D. in physics *and* are doing research in the field, no other physicist will consider you a physicist.
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