What to Expect
Nuclear Electrician’s Mates are responsible for the operation of a ship's electrical power generation systems, lighting systems, electrical equipment and electrical appliances. The duties include installation, operation, adjustment, routine maintenance, inspection, test and repair of electrical equipment. They also perform maintenance and repair of related electronic equipment. As an EMN, you’re responsible for troubleshooting the electric breakers and circuits aboard nuclear-powered ships like aircraft carriers and submarines.
As an Electrician’s Mate Nuclear, you’ll have the opportunity to work at sea or ashore. Your assignment could also place you in an intense, fast-paced environment aboard a nuclear-powered submarine or aircraft carrier.
Learn more about submarine service and life on a ship.
Training & Advancement
Upon completion of initial training at Recruit Training Command Great Lakes, (known as Boot Camp), those pursuing an Electrician’s Mate Nuclear role report to “A” School in Charleston, SC, for six months. Here, they develop a working knowledge of technical mathematics and power distribution. Students learn to solve basic equations using phasors, vector notations and basic trigonometry and analyze DC and AC circuits. They also learn how to operate electrical equipment using controllers, and how to properly test, maintain, troubleshoot, and repair electrical circuits, motors and other related electrical equipment.
From there, EMNs move on to Naval Nuclear Power School (NNPS), also in Charleston, SC. Here they learn theory and practical application of nuclear physics and reactor engineering. The six-month course provides a comprehensive understanding of a pressurized-water Naval nuclear power plant, including reactor core nuclear principles, heat transfer and fluid systems, plant chemistry and materials, mechanical and electrical systems, and radiological control.
Following NNPS, EMNs begin prototype training in their rating specialty at one of two Nuclear Power Training Units (NPTUs) – located in Charleston, SC, and Ballston Spa, NY. This six-month course teaches the fundamentals of a Naval nuclear power plant and the interrelationship of its mechanical, electrical, and reactor subsystems. Students develop oral communications skills, obtain an understanding of nuclear radiation, and gain knowledge of the safe operation of a complex Naval nuclear power plant.
In Nuclear Operations, promotion opportunities are regularly available but competitive and based on performance.
It’s also important to note that specialized training received and work experience gained in the course of service can lead to valuable credentialing and occupational opportunities in related fields in the civilian sector.
Beyond offering access to professional credentials and certifications, Navy technical and operational training for an Electrician's Mate Nuclear can translate to credit hours toward a bachelor’s or associate degree through the American Council on Education.
You may also continue your education through undergraduate degree opportunities like the Navy College Program and Tuition Assistance and the Post-9/11 GI Bill.
Qualifications & Requirements
A high-school diploma or equivalent is required to become an Enlisted Sailor and Electrician’s Mate Nuclear in the Navy. Those seeking a role as an Electrician’s Mate Nuclear must be US citizens with successful completion of one year of Algebra, and who can meet eligibility requirements for a security clearance.