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Electronic-Optronic Technician (Land)

Non-Commissioned Member | Full Time

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As a member of the military, Electronic-Optronic Technicians maintain, repair and modify fire control systems to ensure the accurate delivery of ammunition to the intended target.

Electronic-Optronic Technicians belong to the Corps of Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). The primary responsibilities of the Electronic-Optronic Technician is to:

  • Inspect, test, identify faults in, adjust, repair, recondition and modify electrical, electromechanical, electronic, electro-optic and mechanical equipment, optical instruments, and control systems for weapons and missiles
  • Repair surveillance and thermal observation systems
  • Maintain vehicle satellite navigation systems
  • Maintain fibre-optic systems
  • Repair laser systems
  • Maintain optical, electrical and electronic test equipment
  • Repair portable and trailer-mounted power-generating systems
  • Operate and maintain general-purpose and specialized tools and equipment
  • Drive military-pattern vehicles

Work environment

Electronic-Optronic Technicians typically work at a base or station in Canada in a workshop. During field training and on operations in the field, they generally work in temporary or improvised workshops or outdoors. Electronic-Optronic Technicians are dedicated to the Army, but they may support Royal Canadian Air Force and Royal Canadian Navy operations.

If you chose a career in the Regular Force, upon completion of all required training, you will be assigned to your first base. While there is some flexibility with regards to postings (relocations), accommodations can’t always be made, and therefore, you can likely expect to move at some point in your career. However, if you decide to join the Primary Reserve Force, you will do so through a specific Reserve unit. Outside of training, your chosen Reserve unit will be your workplace on a part time basis, and you will not be obligated to relocate to a different base. As part of the Primary Reserve Force, you typically work one night per week and some weekends as a minimum with possibilities of full-time employment.

Career Overview


Canadian Armed Forces Recruiting Videos




Reviewed – 20 Mar 23 


SERGEANT DANIEL TROMBLEY: I'm Sergeant Daniel Trombley from Foresters Falls, Ontario – an Electronic-Optronic Technician currently posted to Canadian Forces Base Borden.


NARRATOR: Electronic-Optronic Technicians – or EO Techs for short – provide essential support in today’s high-tech Army environment. They play a critical role in artillery, armoured, and infantry operations. 


SERGEANT DANIEL TROMBLEY: We work from the smallest arms, the C7 rifle, all the way up to what are called precision-guided munitions, including the Excalibur and the PGK rounds for the M777 artillery. We ensure that when a round is fired or when a trigger is pulled, that that round arrives on target exactly where it needs to be, the very first time.


NARRATOR: It’s complex, detailed, high-precision work – repairing and aligning laser gun sights, maintaining fiber-optic cables, and keeping lenses and sensors clean, down to the microscopic level. A minor calibration error in an electronically controlled weapon system can be the difference between hitting the target and missing.


Even the most highly sophisticated equipment can break down, but EO Techs are there to keep things running – thermal imaging systems, night-vision scopes and goggles, control systems for missiles, chemical and nuclear weapons detection, and satellite navigation for our vehicles in the field. 


SERGEANT DANIEL TROMBLEY: An EO Tech is responsible for anything from basic field power generation – giving power to our troops in the field – all the way up to maintaining complex sights on our armoured fighting vehicles, as you see behind me, which includes the Leopard family of vehicles, as well as the light armoured fighting vehicles and the TAPVs.


NARRATOR: This is a job that requires laboratory precision, in sometimes less than laboratory conditions. In the field, the actual work will change quite drastically – from repairing things in a clean room with a lot of tools and a lot of space at their disposal, to working in confined areas and often trying to just find something that will work to complete the task at the moment.

SERGEANT DANIEL TROMBLEY: There is no such thing as good enough, as an EO Tech. Everything needs to be 100% ready to go as you go out the door. The consequences otherwise are dire – it could literally mean the difference between life and death.


NARRATOR: Whatever the mission, EO Techs have a great impact. It can be very rewarding to fix something crucial to an operation, and to be able to do it anywhere it breaks down. There’s always new equipment that needs to be looked after. EO Techs are now maintaining the latest remote weapon systems and remotely piloted aircraft like the Forces’ new CU172 Blackjack surveillance drone.




SERGEANT DANIEL TROMBLEY: I have to say, the coolest part about being an EO Tech is seeing the fruits of our labour come together on a range, on international or domestic operations. As that round leaves the barrel, you know, it's that big boom. It's a massive shock. But after that shock wears off, there's also that little bit that, “did I do my job correct?” As soon as you hear that stuff on the radio – “round seen” – that's when you can relax. That's when you know everything's gone well.  You can put a big smile on your face knowing that you gave the users exactly what they needed at the exact time that they needed it.




NARRATOR: Once they complete their training, EO Techs are posted to one of the many Canadian Armed Forces bases across the country. They are a critical part of the Corps of Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, and they work closely with Weapons Technicians, Vehicle Technicians and Materials Technicians to keep the Army’s equipment in top shape.


SERGEANT DANIEL TROMBLEY: The teamwork within the RCEME Corps is truly something to behold. There's a lot of ribbing, a lot of friendly jokes that go around, but at the end of the day, everybody knows that they have a very important task to perform and everybody performs it to the best they can.


NARRATOR: Arte et Marte – “By Skill and by Fighting” – is the motto of the RCEME Corps. Electronic-Optronic Technicians receive the same basic combat training as all other Army soldiers. They also have the opportunity to pursue further combat training such as parachuting, combat first aid, winter warfare, and driving armoured vehicles.


There are also opportunities for EO Techs in the Primary Reserve, serving part-time in their local community while going to school or working at a civilian job. 



SERGEANT DANIEL TROMBLEY: Every morning I wake up and I have a big smile on my face. I couldn't think of a better life for myself or anything that I really want to do besides maybe playing in the NHL. But that's unrealistic, right?


Related Civilian Occupations

  • Electronic Engineering Technologist
  • Electro-Mechanical Technician
  • Surveillance/Thermal Equipment Technician
  • Optical/Optronic Technician
  • Laser Equipment Technician


The first stage of training is the Basic Military Qualification course, or Basic Training, held at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. This training provides the basic core skills and knowledge common to all trades. A goal of this course is to ensure that all recruits maintain the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) physical fitness standard; as a result, the training is physically demanding.

Learn more about Basic Training here.

Electronic-Optronic Technicians will attend the Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers School in Borden, Ontario, for training specific to the roles and responsibilities of the Electronic-Optronic Technician. The training takes about 33 weeks but may be less for those with civilian qualifications in the field. Using a combination of classroom instruction, demonstrations and practical work, it covers the following material:

  • Basic electrical and electronic theory
  • Repair of electrical and electronic equipment
  • Basic optical and optronic theory
  • Repair of mechanical and optical equipment
  • Repair of vehicle-mounted optronic and electronic devices
  • Basic computer theory and architecture
  • Repair of night-observation devices
  • Repair of surveillance equipment
  • Repair of surveying equipment
  • Basic soldiering skills, including field-craft and battle-craft

On-the-job training

Electronic-Optronic Technicians are initially posted to a unit on a CAF Base for about 18 months of on-the-job training, which is similar to an apprenticeship program. During this period, you practice and build on your previous training. You are then eligible for additional training at the Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers School to bring your knowledge, skills and experience to that of a civilian journeyman.

Electronic-Optronic Technicians may be offered the opportunity to develop specialized skills through formal courses and on-the-job training, including:

  • Maintenance of the electrical, electronic and optronic systems of the Leopard tank
  • Maintenance of artillery computers
  • Air-conditioning equipment
  • Simulators and trainers

As they progress in their career, Electronic-Optronic Technicians who demonstrate the required ability and potential will be offered advanced training. Available courses include:

  • Maintenance of digital computers
  • Maintenance of thermal sights
  • Maintenance of advanced surveillance equipment, lasers, and fibre-optics
  • Maintenance of simulators and trainers
  • Maintenance of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (SUAS)
  • Maintenance of Ground Based Air Defence
  • Maintenance of Main Battle Tank (vice Leopard)
  • Maintenance of TOW Missile Systems
  • Leadership and tactics
  • Supervisor-level training
  • Manager-level training

Entry plans

The minimum required education for this position is the completion of the provincial requirements for Grade 10 or Secondary 4 in Quebec, including Grade 10 Applied Math or Math 416/CST 4 in Quebec, and any science course at the Grade 10 level or Secondary 4 level in Quebec.

The ideal candidate will already have a college diploma, the CAF will decide if your academic program matches the training criteria for this job and may place you directly into the any required on-the-job training program following basic training.

Foreign education may be accepted.

Non-commissioned Member Subsidized Training and Education Program

Because this position requires specialty training, the CAF will pay successful recruits to attend the diploma program at an approved Canadian college. NCM STEP students attend basic training and on-the-job training during the summer months. They receive full-time salary including medical and dental care, as well as vacation time with full pay in exchange for working with the CAF for a period of time. If you choose to apply to this program, you must apply both to the CAF and the appropriate college.

Learn more about our Paid Education programs here.