Physical Sciences includes chemistry, physics, and geology.
Although jobs as scientists in any of those disciplines requires further study, jobs as technicians may be available to people with related certificates and associate degrees. Physical science technicians may work exclusively in a lab, performing different types of analysis, or they may primarily be in the field performing experiments and collecting data. Some may do a combination of these things.

Chemical Technicians help set up lab equipment, help chemists conduct experiments, and write reports on their findings. They may also check the quality of chemical products and monitor their production. Nuclear Technicians may be responsible for measuring the levels of radiation around power plants or nuclear experiment sites, collect water, soil, or air samples to test for radiation, or teach others safety precautions to be used around radioactive material. They may also help physicists and nuclear engineers conduct experiments.

Geological and Petroleum Technicians help scientists and engineers with projects and experiments related to gathering natural resources. Some may work primarily in a lab or office, analyzing data and using computer software to provide visualizations, while others are mostly in the field, collecting data.

Forensic Science Technicians collect and catalog evidence at crime scenes and analyze it in labs. They may also be responsible for taking photographs or sketching the crime scene. Forensic Science Technicians may specialize in a particular area, like fingerprint analysis or digital forensic analysis.

 Job Title
 Average Annual Income  Projected Job Growth, 2012-22*  Projected Job Openings, 2012-22
Chemical Technicians  $46,590
Geological and Petroleum Technicians

$58,780 8,100
Nuclear Technicians $73,450 4,100
 Forensic Science Technicians $57,340 5,800

*Projected Job Growth, 2012-2022 Key

Faster than average
(more than 15%)
(8% to 14%)
Slower than average
(less than 7%)

Occupational Outlook Handbook: