What You Can Study More As a Physicist in the Air Force
A physics degree isn’t easy to obtain while in the military, but it isn’t impossible. There are many opportunities for a physicist, including working for a news organization or evaluating radiation levels. A physicist’s salary can reach $100,000 or more. In addition, this career is in high demand in nearly every sector of the economy.
Physicists are needed in almost all sectors of the economy
Over half of physics graduates go on to enter the industrial sector, making the field a key area of need for the next generation. Dan Dawson has extensive experience in the industrial sector, from senior management to start-ups. In 2016, physics-based companies generated $2.3 trillion in U.S. GDP, exported goods worth $1.1 trillion, and employed more than 11 million people.
As the economy continues to grow, so will the demand for physicists. The job market for physicists has steadily improved in recent years. More than 13 percent of physicists earn PhDs outside of academia, and the majority of them are employed in private industry, government, and nonprofit research institutes. The growth in these industries has increased the number of jobs available for physicists, and is a strong indicator of the future health of the entire physics workforce.
They evaluate radiation levels
As a physicist in the Air Force, you may be a part of the medical community evaluating radiation levels in the air. You will have to evaluate the effects of radiation exposure on health and safety. The Air Force has a special radiation safety laboratory called the Radiological Health Laboratory. This laboratory has personnel who evaluate radiation exposures and report them. The laboratory is also responsible for preparing the health-related information provided to the media.
They also have to analyze data and calculate the doses for the individual veterans. Since most measurements were made on site, they were not reliable because of environmental contamination or unreasonable high exposure levels. Therefore, until 2013, the Air Force had used low dose estimates based on environmental measurements taken after the cleanup. After questions were raised from Congress, the Air Force adopted higher dose estimates based on plutonium concentration measurements in the urine of 26 veterans. They assumed that the rest of the cleanup veterans received lower doses than the high-dose group. The highest urine measurement was assigned a maximum organ dose.
They work in news organizations
If you’re a physicist, you might be wondering if the Air Force actually employs physicists. Unlike a job in a news organization, which requires a master’s degree in physics, a position in the Air Force requires a Ph.D., so this job is highly specialized. The air force’s physicists are responsible for maintaining and developing nuclear weapons, and they can be found everywhere from the atomic bomb to nuclear missiles.
They earn more than $100,000 a year
Physicists and nuclear engineers work in the Air Force Reserve. Their job duties include performing research, managing programs, and supporting highly technical operations. Their research includes defining a problem and choosing the appropriate methods to solve it. Then they conduct experiments, collect data, and interpret it. These professionals earn more than $100,000 per year. The Air Force Reserve pays physicists and nuclear engineers more than $100,000 per year, and they have the opportunity to earn a six-figure salary.
As a physicist, you’ll be involved with the analysis of various physical systems and their interactions. This job also requires you to develop theories to explain how they work. These are usually developed through observation and experiments and can include the applications of physical laws. Some physicists earn over $100,000 per year, while others earn less than half that amount.