Engine Cadet Questions


1. Tell me about yourself?
Have a nice day, sir!
The person in front of you is a recent graduate of (name of school) with a Bachelor’s degree in marine/transportation engineering who has joined various clubs and organizations.
2. Why should we hire you?
You should hire me because I firmly believe that I am a competent graduate of __________ and I am very confident in my skills and knowledge for my training as a cadet. I also have the necessary certificates and training documents that are required for my cadet internship.
3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
I think my biggest strength in life is my determination to work hard to achieve my dreams and for my family.
My biggest weakness is being afraid to fail. But as I fail, I learn from my mistakes.
4. Why do I want to be an officer on board?
I want to be an officer on board because I believe I can use my leadership skills to motivate and inspire my fellow seafarers to make them a leader too.
5. What can you say about your course?
I can say that my development is a challenge for me. Every day I learn new things. It makes me become a better person.
6. In how many years would you like to be chief mechanic or assistant chief mechanic?
7. How long will you work in our company?
I think it is a concession and an opportunity to be in this company. So I will stay in this company as long as the company needs my services.
8. What is a sailor?
A seaman is what we all know as a seafarer. A deckhand is a person who sails ships on the water or assists, as a member of the crew, in the operation and maintenance of ships. I call the sailor a hero of modern times because they sacrifice their lives every day.
9. What is your reason for wanting to be a sailor?
The main reason I became a sailor is not to travel around the world, but to be a successful chief engineer.
I want to work on board ship and help my family.
10. What are the advantages and disadvantages of being a sailor?
11. What motivates you to become a sailor?
My biggest motivation is my dream of becoming a world-class chief engineer.
12. How will you overcome the challenges and difficulties of being a seafarer?
Hard work and prayer. You have to work hard to become a competent marine engineer officer and pray to Almighty God for guidance and strength.
13. What is leadership?
Leadership is the ability to inspire or influence others to achieve the leader’s goal. Leaders have followers. If someone has followers, he or she is a leader.
14. What is your favourite subject?
15. Tell me about your favourite subject.


1. What is safety?
Safety is the state of being „safe” (from the French sauf), the condition of being protected against physical, social, spiritual, financial, political, emotional, professional, psychological, educational or other types or consequences of failure, harm, error, accident, damage or any other event that might be considered undesirable.
Safety is ABC – Always be careful
Safety is free from the occurrence of a hazard or any type of risk.
2. What is Marpol?
Marpol 73/78 is the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as amended by the Protocol of 1978.
3. What are the Annexes to Marpol?
I – Oil
II – Noxious liquid substance
III – Packaged form
IV – Waste water
V – Garbage
VI – Air
4. What are the four pillars of IMO?
STCW-Standards for Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (1995)
SOLAS- The International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) is an international maritime safety treaty.
MARPOL- Marpol 73/78 is the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, as amended by the 1978 Protocol.
MLC- The Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 was established in 2006 as the fourth pillar of international maritime law and includes „all updated standards of existing international maritime labour Conventions and Recommendations as well as the fundamental principles found in other international labour Conventions”.
5. How many miles can you throw garbage on board?
Plastic – prohibited
Floating fillers, liners and packing materials – 25 mm
Paper, rags, glass – 3 mm
Paper, rags, glass (on the ground) – 12 mm
Food waste – 12 mm
Food waste (ground) – 3 mm
6. What are the steps to follow when a fire occurs in the car compartment?
Sound the alarm
Inform the control deck
Locate/use a fire extinguisher or fire hose
7. What is the fire triangle and its composition?
Heat, fuel, oxygen
8. What are the appropriate fire extinguishers to use in case of fire (interviewer will cite an example or situation).
A (wood/paper) –
B (flammable liquid) –
C (Electricity) –
D (metal) –
K (kitchen) –
9. How will you encourage your team to observe safety precautions and best working practices on board?
10. How will you maintain safe working practices on board?
11. What are ECA and SECA?
12. What is ORB?
13. The minimum amount of oxygen a human needs when entering a confined space?

Technical (Engine)

1. What is marine engineering?
The Bachelor of Marine Engineering degree is a 4-year programme that focuses on the construction, operation and maintenance of various types of marine vessels such as cargo ships, cruise ships, fishing boats, combat ships and submarines.
This programme aims to provide students with the knowledge and skills that will enable them to operate and maintain the various machinery installed on marine vessels, including propulsion plant, auxiliary and auxiliary machinery, electrical and refrigeration systems.
2. What are the duties and responsibilities of a cadet engineer on board?
Chief Engineer – is responsible to the Master for the satisfactory operation of all machinery and equipment.
Chief Engineer – is responsible for practical maintenance for the Chief Engineer to supervise. Is under the command/instruction/supervision of the Chief Mechanic. Duties: Work planning, Repairs and Maintenance and Machine compartment manager.
Officer 3 or 4 – are usually carriage officers or senior engineers in charge of the carriage. They follow the instructions of the chief assistant engineer. Repairs and Maintenance. Carriage Officers.
Cadet mechanic – is the youngest personnel in the car department. Is responsible for obeying the orders of the chief assistant mechanic.
3. Differentiate between diesel engine and gas engine.
Both are internal combustion engines designed to convert chemical energy into mechanical energy.
Diesel engine – Air mixed – with fuel injector that produces combustion. In order to burn, heat resulting from compression must be applied.
Gas engine – With spark plug to produce heat.
4. What is the four-stroke diesel engine?
4 cycles 2 revolutions
5. What is the two-stroke diesel engine?
2 cycles 1 revolution
6. What is the difference between a four-stroke and a two-stroke engine and vice versa?
4-stroke – 4 cycles 2 revolutions
2-stroke – 2 cycles 1 revolution
7. Explain four-stroke and two-stroke cycles.
8. Advantages and disadvantages of four – stroke and two – stroke.
A two-stroke engine can produce twice as much power (and make twice as much noise). Two-stroke engines are simpler and cheaper to manufacture than four-stroke engines because of their simpler design.
Four-stroke engines have a longer life than two-stroke engines that do not have a dedicated lubrication system. Four-stroke engines are more fuel efficient and environmentally friendly compared to two-stroke engines which also create an unpleasant smell.
9. What is refrigeration?
Refrigeration is a process of moving heat from one place to another.
10. Draw and explain the refrigeration cycle.
Compressor-compresses the refrigerant
Oil-water separator – removes oil and water
Receiver (optional)
Evaporator-place where heat absorption takes place
Condenser-cools the refrigerant after compression
Expansion valve – controls refrigerant flow to evaporator
11. What is the difference between a purifier and a clarifier?
Both are used in a separation process.
Purifier – two liquids of different densities are separated using a centrifuge.
Clarifier – when the same centrifuge is used to separate solid impurities from the fuel.
12. What are pumps and cite the types of pumps and their uses?
A pump is a device that moves fluids (liquids or gases), or sometimes suspensions, by mechanical action.
13. Parts of the main engine.
Camshaft, crankshaft, crankshaft, piston, intake and exhaust valve, combustion chamber, connecting rod, cylinder liner, cylinder liner, cylinder head.
14. Define the parts of the main engine and their functions.
15. What does series mean?
A series circuit has more than one resistor (anything that uses electricity to do work) and gets its name because it has only one path along which loads travel. This is because the components are connected end-to-end in a line to form a single path for the electrons to flow.
16. What does parallel mean?
A parallel circuit has more than one resistor (anything that uses electricity to do work) and gets its name from having more than one (parallel) path of travel. There are multiple electron paths, but only one voltage across all the components.
17. What is the difference between series and parallel?
18. Is a Christmas light a series connection?
19. What is the difference between direct current and alternating current?
Direct current is defined as a „unidirectional” flow of current; current flows in only one direction.
Alternating current describes the flow of charge that periodically changes direction.
20. Give examples of direct and alternating current?
Your refrigerator, washer and dryer, oven, lights, use alternating current.
Your mobile phone, cordless phone, flashlight use direct current.
21. Examples of machine tools and their functions
Drilling- is a cutting process that uses a drill to cut or enlarge a hole of circular cross-section in solid materials.
Welding – is used to join two metals.
Lathe- is a machine that rotates the workpiece on its axis to perform various operations, such as cutting, grinding, notching, drilling or deforming, turning, using tools that are applied to the workpiece.
Grinder – is a grinding tool with an abrasive disc
22. What is welding?
Welding is a fabrication or sculpting process that joins materials, usually metals or thermoplastic materials, by producing fusion, which differs from lower temperature metal joining techniques such as brazing and soldering, which do not melt the base metal.

Marine Boilers

1. What is a boiler?
It is a device used to create steam by applying heat energy to water. It produces steam also used for heating fuel oil, lubricating oil and other fluids to maintain viscosity for combustion.
2. What are the types of boilers?
Firetube – these consist of large tubes for low-pressure heating installations, and the combustion product passes through the inside of the tubes and is surrounded by water outside the tubes.
Watertube – built with small tubes and efficient production of higher steam pressure, where water is contained inside the tubes and the combustion product passes through the outside of the tubes.


1. What is a hand tool
Hand tool – a hand tool is any tool that is not a power tool – i.e. one that is operated manually and not by a motor.
Ex. Hammer, pliers, screwdrivers, chisel, star screw, hacksaw, wrenches
2. What is a power tool?
A power tool is a tool that is operated by an additional source of power and a mechanism, other than the purely manual work used for hand tools
Ex. Grinder, drill, drill bit, chain saw, joiner, woodworker, lathe, chainsaw, percussion wrench, pneumatic writing brush, jet chisel, chain block, nail gun

Basic Convertion

1 foot (ft) – 12 inches
1 Inch = 2.54 cm
1 yard (yd) – 3 feet
1 Kg = 2.2 lbs
1 mile – 1.6 km
1 knot = 1 nm/hour
1 nm = 1.852 km
Piston parts – piston, piston rod, piston ring.
Propeller – A mechanical device for propelling a ship consisting of a rotating shaft.
Ballast – Pumps seawater into empty storage tanks when the ship is very light.

Engineering Materials

Metals and non-metals
METALS – have high thermal and electrical conductivity
2 Groups
Ferrous metals – have IRON as a common element. High permeability
Ex. Cast iron, steel, silicon steel
Non-ferrous – Have low permeability…. Support magnetic field formation.
Ex. Silver, copper, gold, aluminium
NON-METALS – are non-crystalline in nature. Poor conductor of heat and electricity
Ex. Rubber, plastic, leather
Metals and alloys
METALS – are polycrystalline bodies that have a number of differentially oriented fine crystals.
ALLOYS – composed of two or more metals or metal and non-metal (e.g. steel, brass, bronze)
CERAMIC MATERIALS – are non-metallic solids composed of inorganic compounds (oxides, nitrides, silicides) (e.g. glass, cement, silica)
ORGANIC MATERIALS – have carbon as a common element (e.g. plastics, synthetic rubbers).
Hardness – resists wear, abrasion and cutting
Plasticity – is plastic if it is very soft and easy to deform and does not return to its original shape after deformation
Brittleness – does not allow permanent deformation before breaking (breaks instantly)
Ductility – ability to deform under tensile stress
Malleability – ability to deform under compressive stress
Strength – a material will break on sudden impact.

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