Navy Enlisted Rating (Job) Descriptions

Nuclear Community

Guided Missile Submarine Shown To Media
••• U.S. Navy / Getty Images

The Nuclear Power Community is one of the most competitive and requires the highest standards of academic (science / math) skills in the military - and for good reason.  These men and women are solely responsible for operating a nuclear reactor for the submarine and aircraft carrier power and propulsion.  If you show up and ace the ASVAB, one of the first things the recruiters will tell you is that you qualify for the Nuclear Field (NF) - also known as the Nuclear Power Program in the Navy.

Below are the Navy enlisted ratings that fall into the Nuclear Community. Click on each rating designator to read a basic job description, as well as basic qualification criteria established to obtain the particular rating.

NF - Nuclear Field Enlistment Program - When you sign on the dotted line as a new enlistee in the Navy and you are exceptionally qualified, you will be granted the Nuclear Field (NF) title.  Once you complete Nuclear Power School, you will advance into other nuclear ratings.  The qualifications to attempt Nuclear Power School are high:  

ASVAB Score: plus Naval Advanced Placement Test (NAPT)

VE+AR+MK+NAPT = 290 (with minimum 50 NAPT score) or AR+MK+EI+GS+NAPT = 290 (with minimum 50 NAPT score) or VE+AR+MK+MC = 252 (No NAPT required) or AR+MK+EI+GS = 252 (No NAPT required).  You only need to take the NAPT if you do not score high enough on the ASVAB.

Other Requirements

Security Clearance, (SECRET) required. Must be a U.S. Citizen. At least 17 years of age but not have reached 25th birthday by active duty date (waivers on a case basis). Police Record Checks required.

Any offense (except minor traffic) in DEP requires a waiver. Any history of drug use (including marijuana) requires a waiver. Must provide complete transcripts of high school records. Must have completed one full year of algebra, though higher math is recommended in HS or college.

Then you must finish these courses of instruction before you can advance to be prepared your rating:

  • Nuke Power School School, Charleston, SC -- 6 months
  • Nuclear Power Training Unit, Ballson Spa, NY or Charleston, SC -- 6 months

EM(N) -Nuclear Trained Electricians Mate - The EM rating A school is also 6 months.  

Nuclear-trained EMs perform duties in nuclear propulsion plants operating reactor control, propulsion and power generation systems. 

ET(N) -Nuclear Trained Electronics Technician - The ET rating school is also 6 months.  Nuclear-trained ETs operate reactor control, propulsion, and power generation systems in nuclear propulsion plants.

MM(N) -Nuclear Trained Machinist's Mate - The MM rating school is 3 months. Nuclear-trained MMs operate reactor control, propulsion, and power generation systems in nuclear propulsion plants.

All of the above training and A schools are located in Charleston South Carolina and will take 15-18 months to complete before you are eligible to be deployed with ocean going commands in the Submarine Fleet or the floating city they call the Aircraft Carrier.  Both are nuclear propelled and will require these important skills learned by its sailors to stay operable and battle ready.

  • Navy Submarine Duty

    Learn About Being a Navy Nuclear Trained Electronics Technician

  • Navy submarine surfacing through an ice sheet in the Arctic during operations.

    Submarine Electronics Computer Field (SECF) - US Navy Job Description

  • The sun and a radioactive symbol

    What You Need to Know About the Nuclear Trained Machinist Mate

  • Soldiers Salute the Flag at Sunset

    Enlisted Job Information About Navy Ratings

  • The aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman

    Navy Enlisted Nuclear Field Jobs and Qualifications

  • PACIFIC OCEAN (May 26, 2011) Electronics Technician 3rd Class Kelly Hall conducts maintenance on a receiver-transmitter unit in an ultra high frequency radio room aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70). Carl Vinson and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17 are underway in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility.

    Facts that Can Help You Become a Navy Electronics Technician

  • Navy recruiter

    Navy Enlisted Classification Codes

  • submarine descending into the ocean.

    Navy Enlisted Ratings and Job Descriptions in the Submarine Community

  • USS City of Corpus Christi

    Machinist’s Mate, Auxiliary (MM-AUX) - Navy Enlisted Rating

  • a sailor installing a propeller on the number two engine of a P-3C Orion aircraft

    Being an Aviation Machinist Mate (AD) in the U.S. Navy

  • Sonar Technician stands sentry aboard the Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Annapolis.

    Navy NEC Codes - Sonar Technician

  • Observe of battleship

    What Does a Cryptologic Technician - Technical (CTT) Do?

  • Navy Counselor 1st Class Randy L. Schiller and Senior Chief Navy Counselor George A. Keels, both assigned to the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4), perform a ceremonial flag raising during a visit to the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

    How to Become a Navy Counselor (NC)

  • A infographic on the things you should consider before enlisting in the Navy

    What You Should Consider Before Deciding to Join the Navy

  • US Navy operative near navy helicopter on landing base.

    Navy Qualification Factors for Information System Technician (IT)

  • PHC (AW/NAC) Edward G. Martens

    Photographers Mate (PH) - Navy Enlisted Rating