This post provides detailed information on the composite technician job description, including the key duties, tasks, and responsibilities they commonly perform.
It also highlights the major requirements you may need to fulfill to be hired for the composite technician role.
What Does a Composite Technician Do?
A composite technician fabricates, assembles, repairs, and does quality inspections on parts and products made from composite materials like fiberglass, carbon fiber, and reinforced plastics.
Composite technicians typically report to a composite shop manager or engineer. In smaller companies, they may report directly to the owner or president.
Composite technicians work in production facilities, composite component shops, aviation maintenance units, prototype development labs, and other industrial environments focused on composite materials.
Major employers include aerospace, defense contractors, automotive companies, boat builders, and sporting goods manufacturers.
While some composite technician roles only require a high school diploma along with on-the-job training, many employers prefer candidates with trade school certifications or Associate’s degrees in composite technology.
Demonstrated experience working with composite materials is also valuable. Ongoing professional development helps composite techs advance their specializations.
The composite technician job description involves fabricating, trimming, assembling, bonding, curing, and troubleshooting composite materials, parts, and products.
It also entails cutting, forming, machining, measuring, and inspecting composite made of substances like carbon fiber or fiberglass.
Beyond fabrication work, composite technicians may participate in prototype development, create documentation and work instructions for manufacturing processes, install composite in finished products like aircraft or cars, and repair damaged composite components.
With the expanding adoption of composite materials across transportation, aviation, infrastructure, and consumer product industries, qualified composite technicians are essential for scaling production while ensuring quality, consistency, and safety.
They turn composite material innovations into functional and reliable components and end-use products.
Employers seek composite technicians with working knowledge of composite materials, experience with manual and computer-controlled fabrication methods, attention to detail, critical thinking ability, and strong safety fundamentals.
Composite Technician Job Description Example/Sample/Template
The composite technician job description usually consists of the following duties, tasks, and responsibilities:
- Fabricate composite parts and products by laying up composite material layers, curing, bonding, and performing finishing work
- Trim composite materials using hand tools or computer numerical control (CNC) cutting equipment
- Assemble composite components into subassemblies and larger sections by bonding parts and drilling holes for fasteners
- Read and understand technical drawings, documentation, work orders, quality specifications, and process guidelines
- Program CNC machines using computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software to cut composite fabric and materials
- Check the quality of incoming raw precursor composite materials to ensure specifications compliance
- Maintain production logs and documenting all work for traceability and auditing
- Lay out, measure, cut, and shape composite fiber plies to conform to product engineering designs
- Prepare molds, apply release agents, seal edges, and mount necessary inserts before layup
- Align and drape multiple layers of dry composite material on production panel molds
- Apply adhesive films, pastes, putties and other bonding compounds to join composite
- Install composite interior/exterior aircraft components, wings, tail sections, fuselage assemblies, etc.
- Cure composite parts in ovens and autoclaves according to required heating cycles
- Sand, trim, drill, contour, polish, clean, and finish cured composite using both manual and automated methods
- Inspect, measure, and test composite assemblies at all production stages for defects and conformity
- Repair damaged composite components by patching holes, rebuilding corroded sections, and reworking design features
- Maintain production work area to ensure a clean, safe, and efficient workspace.
Composite Technician Job Description for Resume
If you have worked previous as a composite technician or are presently working in that role and are making a resume or CV for a new job, then you can create a compelling Professional Experience section for your resume by applying the sample composite technician job description provided above.
You can highlight the major duties and responsibilities you have performed as a composite technician or are currently carrying out in your resume’s Professional Experience by utilizing the ones provided in the above composite technician job description example.
This will serve as a proof to recruiters/employers that you have been successful performing the job of a composite technician, which can greatly enhance your chances of being hired for the new role that you are seeking.
Composite Technician Requirements: Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities for Career Success
Here are vital skills, knowledge, and abilities needed for a successful career as a composite technician, which are also usually required by recruiters/employers when hiring for the positions:
- Dexterity and attention to detail manipulating composite fabrics/prepregs
- Proficiency operating CNC cutting equipment
- Expertise working with epoxy resins and other matrix materials
- Ability using cutting, trimming, sanding, drilling, and finishing tools
- Skilled performing composite inspections and testing methods
- Capable reading and interpreting technical drawings and documentation
- Aptitude for following safety protocols for handling hazardous materials
- In-depth understanding of composite materials and their applications
- Knowledge of autoclave/oven cure cycles and parametrics
- Familiarity with common fastening and joining techniques for composite
- Working knowledge of finish carpentry methods applicable to composite
- Understanding of regulatory compliance relevant to role and industry
- Ability to fabricate quality composite parts with minimal defects
- Aptitude for assessing and troubleshooting composite fabrication issues
- Capability to actively participate in continuous process improvement
- Ability to use Microsoft Office tools and advanced composite software
- Capacity to effectively communicate with engineers, technicians, and leadership
- Ability to work precisely and accurately under deadlines
- Capacity to maintain clean, safe work environment and procedures.
Composite Technician Salary
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the median annual pay for composite technicians across the country was $59,450 in 2022.
Almost 60k is a solid take home. But if you really want to rake in the big bucks in this profession, you have to make your way out West.
Sunny California tops the list at #1 with composite techs earning a very nice $86,430 per year.
Washington State comes in second at $72,180. Oregon lands at #3 with $71,840.
Then you have Colorado and Nevada rounding out the top 5 with salaries of $68,590 and $67,020 respectively.
So, if you don’t mind some cross-country relocation for your career, the West Coast looks like the place to be for composite technicians.
As industries from aerospace to automotive continue innovating with advanced composite materials, the role of composite technicians will grow in significance supporting these cutting-edge applications.
Their specialized skills not just in fabrication but inspection, testing, repair, and quality assurance make composite technicians essential across the entire lifecycle of composite components and products.
By understanding the composite technician job description, the abilities they require, their critical duties, salary outlook, and top employers, both individuals exploring this career and companies needing qualified composite staff can make informed decisions.
Whether an aspiring technician getting the right trade school training, or a manufacturer ensured they draft an accurate composite tech job description, we hope this guide has delivered valuable insights.
The future will undoubtedly contain more products made with composite materials from planes and race cars to smartphones and MRI machines.
That translates to strong demand for knowledgeable and certified composite technicians capable of reliably and safely working with these advanced materials.
It’s a specialized field powering innovation across industries where professionals get to play a technical role while avoiding some traditional factory work hazards.
For those reasons and the competitive salaries compared to just high school diploma roles, composite technicians will continue attracting talent across the country.