Project Manager for the ELT-MAORY instrument

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Monday, March 4, 2019
Archive Date: 
Monday, April 1, 2019
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Science Engineering
Institution Classification/Type: 
Department Name: 
Osservatorio di Astrofisica e Scienza dello Spazio (OAS)
Street Line 1: 
via Gobetti 93/3
Job Announcement Text: 

The MAORY project.

MAORY (Multi-conjugate Adaptive Optics RelaY) is one of the first light instruments for the European Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), the 39 m diameter optical-infrared telescope that the European Southern Observatory (ESO) will build in the next decade in collaboration with its community of member States.

MAORY is a post-focal adaptive optics module. It supports the MICADO near-infrared camera by offering Multi-Conjugate Adaptive Optics (MCAO) adaptive optics modes.

In the MCAO mode, wavefront sensing is performed by a system based on up to six Laser Guide Stars for high-order wavefront sensing and three Natural Guide Stars for low-order wavefront sensing; wavefront compensation is achieved by up to two deformable mirrors in MAORY, which work together with the telescope adaptive and tip-tilt mirrors M4 and M5 respectively.

MAORY is expected to complete the Preliminary Design Phase within one year from now and be delivered at the telescope in 2025.

The international consortium that develops MAORY includes INAF (lead institute responsible for the design and construction of the instrument at system level) and IPAG (responsible for the development of the Laser Guide Star wavefront sensor sub-system). ESO is the project customer and is also a supplier of components for the instrument construction. The Project Office of the MAORY project is located in the Bologna at the “Osservatorio di Astrofisica e Scienza dello Spazio” of INAF (Italian National Institute for AstroPhysics). Scientists and engineers that contribute to the project are based in several institutes in Italy and in Grenoble (Fr).

The Role

We are actively seeking an excellent candidate for the position of Project Manager of the whole MAORY project. 

The Project Manager will be located at the Bologna Observatory and work in close coordination with the Principle Investigator and the whole Project team to ensure a prompt delivery of the instrument across all the phases of the instrument development. This is an exciting opportunity to join a multinational collaborative team that will bring the MAORY instrument into successful operations and science.

Working within a matrix organisation alongside engineers, technicians and scientists, and reporting to the Project Principal Investigator, your main duties, tailored to the specific projects in question, will be to:

• manage the scope of the project by confirming the science specification and the engineering requirements and developing and maintaining a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), and thereafter managing any requested or necessary changes to the project deliverables as agreed with the stake-holders;

• manage the organisation of the project by agreeing with the project PI and COIs, in agreement with the INAF and IPAG managers, the appropriate resource allocation and responsibilities of all staff on the project;

• manage the quality and safety aspects of the project using established industry standards and in-house procedures;

• manage the cost of the project, including the preparation of estimates for approval against budgets, maintaining cost to go forecasts for effort and requisitions, and negotiating access to contingency funds or changes to the project scope where necessary;

• manage the timeline of the project by developing and maintaining a suitably comprehensive integrated project plan for all activities across the consortium;

• manage the project risks and opportunities by identifying and quantifying, before the budget is set, all the potential threats and benefits to the scope, time-scales and cost of the project, and implementing an on-going process of risk management over the project lifecycle;

• communicate the project status and progress across the design teams to all stake-holders, including INAF and IPAG managers, ESO supervisors and other stake-holders;

• manage the contracts for all key procurement items, working with the UK government procurement agency during the selection phase then managing the contractors through the manufacturing phase.

The role of MAORY Project Manager will entail significant travel, to coordinate with other Italian and European partners and attend work package meetings, especially at the ESO headquarters in Garching (Munchen).

About you

You will have a good first degree in Physics, Astronomy/Astrophysics Engineering or other Science based subject and have working experience as a Project Manager in either industry or academia, or as a lead designer in a primary engineering discipline or have experience of developing software in a collaborative scientific environment at an earlier career stage. You will have experience of managing scientific projects and will have been responsible for the cost and on time delivery of these projects, to the specification, quality and safety standards required.

What we offer

INAF is offering a 2+1 years contract of “Dirigente Tecnologo” based at the Bologna Observatory with a gross salary of approximately 56.900 €, corresponding to a net salary of approximately 36,400€. The package includes a flexible working scheme, a full pension scheme, 30 days annual leave allowance and full personal and family health coverage through the Italian public system. Italian researchers who have been working abroad since more than 3 years might be eligible to a significant tax weaver.

How to apply

Applicants need to submit an application by filling the relevant application form and providing an updated CV.

Applications must be submitted by e-mail  to not later than March 30.

The selection will be based on the submitted CV and by an oral interview.

All interested candidates are strongly adviced to contact the MAORY PI Paolo Ciliegi by e-mail ( to be instructed about the submission process and the work detail.

Application Deadline: 
Monday, April 1, 2019
Selection Deadline: 
Tuesday, April 30, 2019
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
Apply to Job
Attention To: 
Adriano Fontana
Department Name: 
Direzione Scientifica
Street Line 1: 
Viale del Parco Mellini 84
Zip/Postal Code: 
+39 06 94286456
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