Wind Turbine Mechanical Engineer
best new job swind turbine mechanical engineer
10-year job growth: 8.8%
Median pay: $61,300

What they do all day? Wind power is sweeping the nation, and these technical specialists are responsible for monitoring the condition of turbines and troubleshooting any problems that affect performance.

How to get the job? In addition to mechanical and electrical experience, recruiters look for problem-solvers with a sharp eye for detail. "Many veterans and workers from the utility and energy industries tend to migrate into the wind industry because the skills are fairly transferable," says Michele Mihelic of the American Wind Energy Association.

What makes it great? The industry provides ample training, and opportunities for career advancement are plentiful. There are lots of chances to travel -- a plus for those who love to get away.

What's the catch? Those with a fear of extreme heights can forget this career. Technicians need to climb wind turbines daily, which can rise to 300 feet or more, says Mihelic.

Source:, CNNMoney research
Note: Median pay is for an experienced worker (at least five to seven years in field). Job growth is estimated for 2010-20, and based on people working in broader 'job family' from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. For detailed methodology, see How We Picked the Best Jobs.
  @CNNMoney - Last updated November 05 2012 04:45 PM ET
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