Marine Technicians are responsible for the operation and maintenance of the ship’s engines, as well as additional equipment and systems that contribute toward the ship's ability to 'float and move'. As a Marine Technician you are trained to be an expert in the field, making a major contribution towards ensuring the ship is always ready to sail at a moments notice. Without you, the ship doesn’t sail!
As modern warships contain more sophisticated technology and a greater range of equipment than a jet aircraft you will operate and maintain a wide range of equipment including: diesel engines, gas turbines (jet engines), electrical power generation, power distribution systems, machinery control and monitoring systems, hydraulic and pneumatic systems, refrigeration and air conditioning plants, sewage treatment plants, desalination equipment (making fresh water from sea water), liquid storage, hull and internal fittings.
To best deal with the wide range of machinery and equipment onboard the ships, after your Basic Technician Course, you will be streamed in one of two specialisations; electrical or propulsion according to your interests, skills and the requirements of the service. Once streamed you will complete a short course in your chosen specialisation before being posted to sea.
As a Marine Technician you will continuously develop and enhance your skills to ensure the smooth running of machinery when on ship. This will require on-going training at the Marine Engineering School and Trade Training School. When not at sea you will be posted to one of the maintenance support departments or the Marine Engineering School.
All Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) ships require the capability to ‘float and move’; therefore Marine Technician positions exist on every HMNZ Ship within the Fleet. Because ships at sea run 24 hours a day, as a Marine Technician you will work in shifts monitoring the ships engines and other plant and machinery to ensure they are running smoothly and efficiently. Like everyone else onboard, you will also participate in general shipboard duties and activities not connected with your specialised role and have the opportunity to visit different ports and environments both in New Zealand and overseas.
Your hard work, experience and training accomplishments as a Marine Technician are rewarded by promotions in rank and salary. You join the Navy as an Ordinary Rate completing Basic Common Training (BCT) and Basic Branch Training which is your Basic Marine Technician Training or AMT Common and Specialist Course. After this specialist course you will post to sea or ashore to consolidate what you have learnt through on job training. After your time at sea you will need to complete your Advanced Technician Training as well as some further leadership courses before being promoted to Leading Hand.
Careers in the Navy are well-rewarded as well as being diverse and exciting. As you become more experienced and move up through the ranks, gaining additional skills and qualifications, you will see your salary rise accordingly.
While undertaking Basic Recruit Course you will be paid as a Recruit (see attached pay table). On completion of your Basic Recruit Course you will be paid as an Ordinary Rate and your pay will continue to increase as your career progresses.
Upon successful enlistment into the Navy you’ll be posted to Devonport Navy base in Auckland. Here you will do 13 weeks of basic military training to find out if you’ve got what it takes to be in the Navy, and learn various subjects including:
Marine Technicians have to know how to operate and maintain the ship's engine plants and systems in all conditions to ensure the ship remains fully functional and operational. To achieve this you will be thoroughly trained in equipment fault diagnosis and repair through the use of state-of-the-art monitoring and analysis equipment.
Following Basic Common Training, you spend approximately 28 weeks completing Basic Marine Technician Training followed by specialisation training (8weeks for Propulsion Specialists and 2 weeks for Electrical Specialists) at the Devonport Naval Base in Auckland. On completion of these courses, you spend 18 months to two years undergoing on-the-job training both at sea and ashore to gain experience before completing your advanced Electrical or Propulsion course. Successful completion of this advanced course will leave you professionally qualified for promotion to Leading Hand.
The learning doesn’t stop in the classroom however, you will complete a ‘task book’ and other certificates whilst completing on-the-job training onboard a ship which contributes towards meeting the requirements for further promotion.
As part of your naval studies as a Marine Technician the unit standards you complete contribute towards a National Certificate (Level 4) in either Mechanical Engineering (Maintenance Engineering) for Propulsion Specialists or Mechanical Engineering (Electrical Engineering) and registration through the Electrical Workers Registration Board for Electrical Specialists.
These qualifications are instructed by the Navy’s Technical Schools in accordance with the National Qualification Framework and are gained in addition to other professional naval qualifications. The Navy meets all costs of this training, which is usually concluded within the first four years of a Marine Technician’s career.
As a Marine Technician you will be spending a vast proportion of your time posted any one of the RNZN ships. When not posted to ship you will be posted to one of the maintenance support departments or the Marine Engineering School at Devonport Naval Base.