Gas processing plant control room operator


Gas processing control room operators perform a range of tasks from the control room of a processing plant. They monitor the processes through electronic representations shown on monitors, dials, and lights. They make changes to variables and communicate with other departments to make sure processes keep running smoothly and according to established procedures. They take appropriate actions in case of irregularities or emergencies.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to gas processing plant control room operator:

process control operator
monitoring panel operator
process plant operator
gas processing control room manager
control panel monitor
gas processing control room technician
panel board operator
gas processing plant operator
gas processing control room supervisor
gas process operator
panel controller
process control room operator
plant monitoring operator

Minimum qualifications

A high school diploma or equivalent is generally the minimum required to work as a gas processing plant control room operator.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Gas processing plant control room operator is a Skill level 3 occupation.

Gas processing plant control room operator career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to gas processing plant control room operator.

oil refinery control room operator
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Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of gas processing plant control room operator. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of gas processing plant control room operator with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

mine ventilation engineer
mud logger
mine health and safety engineer
mine electrical engineer
mine mechanical engineer

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of gas processing plant control room operator.

  • Natural gas: The various facets of natural gas: its extraction, processing, constituents, uses, environmental factors, etc.
  • Electronics: The functioning of electronic circuit boards, processors, chips, and computer hardware and software, including programming and applications. Apply this knowledge to ensure electronic equipment runs smoothly.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of gas processing plant control room operator.

  • Use a computer: Utilise computer equipment or digital devices to facilitate quality control, data management, and communication. Follow instructions given by a computer programme, create computer files or documents.
  • Ensure compliance with safety legislation: Implement safety programmes to comply with national laws and legislation. Ensure that equipment and processes are compliant with safety regulations.
  • Troubleshoot: Identify operating problems, decide what to do about it and report accordingly.
  • Manage emergency procedures: React quickly in case of emergency and set planned emergency procedures in motion.
  • Write production reports: Make up and complete shift schedules and production reports in a timely manner.
  • Monitor equipment: Monitoring equipment implies watching gauges, dials, or display screens to make sure a machine is working.
  • Coordinate remote communications: Direct network and radio communications between different operational units. Receive and transfer further radio or telecom messages or calls. These might include messages from the public, or the emergency services.
  • Conduct inter-shift communication: Communicate relevant information about the conditions in the workplace, progress, events, and potential problems to the workers in the next shift.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of gas processing plant control room operator. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Sulphur recovery processes: Processes to recover elemental sulphur or other desired sulphuric products from acid gas obtained as a byproduct from the sweetening of raw gas, such as the Claus process, which uses thermic and catalytic reactions, or its variants.
  • Gas dehydration processes: The processes used to remove water from natural gas such as the absorption process using glycol or activated alumina.
  • Natural gas liquids recovery processes: Be aware of common processes used to separate heavier hydrocarbons such as ethane, propane and butane from the methane, which is the finished product of the gas processing plant. Be aware of oil absorption techniques, cryogenic expansion processes, and other relevant processes.
  • Gas contaminant removal processes: The processes used to remove contaminants such as mercury, nitrogen and helium from natural gas; the techniques such as activated carbon and molecular sieves and the recovery of the removed material if it is commercially viable.
  • Natural gas liquids fractionation processes: Have an understanding of the processes used to separate natural gas liquids or NGLs into its constituents, including ethand, propane, butane, and heavier hydrocarbons. Understand the workings of the deethaniser, depropaniser, debutaniser, and butane splitter.
  • Electricity: Understand the principles of electricity and electrical power circuits, as well as the associated risks.
  • Sour gas sweetening processes: Processes of removing certain corrosive contaminants, such as hydrogen sulfide (H₂S) from raw gas, such as the Girdler process which uses amine solutions, or modern processes using polymeric membranes.
  • Mechanics: Theoretical and practical applications of the science studying the action of displacements and forces on physical bodies to the development of machinery and mechanical devices.

ISCO group and title

3134 – Petroleum and natural gas refining plant operators

  1. Gas processing plant control room operator – ESCO
Last updated on January 25, 2023

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