Deputy Project Manager

Submission Information
Publish Date: 
Friday, March 11, 2022
Archive Date: 
Friday, July 1, 2022
Job Summary
Job Category: 
Science Management
Institution Classification/Type: 
TMT International Observatory LLC
United States of America
Job Announcement Text: 

Job Summary
The Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) project has been established to design, build and eventually operate an Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) with a primary mirror diameter of 30 meters. ELT’s will be the successors of the present day 8-10 meter world class telescopes. When complete the TMT will be the largest ground based optical/infrared telescope in the northern hemisphere providing the capability to study exciting astronomical problems from the nature of extra-solar planets to the first stars in the universe. An international collaboration consisting of the University of California, the California Institute of Technology, Canada, Japan, India and China has been formed to deliver this exciting project.

The TMT project recently entered construction and will be completed and ready for science operations in 2034. The TMT project office is located in Pasadena, CA, and in Hilo, HI, USA. The design and build of the various telescope systems will be distributed amongst the TMT partner institutions, collaborators, industry, and the Project Office. For more information, please see:

Responsibilities and Activities

  • The Deputy Project Manager will assist the Project Manager in all aspects of planning and executing the TMT project, providing technical and programmatic leadership. At the direction of the Project Manager, the Deputy Project Manager will be responsible for day-to-day technical, engineering and programmatic operation of the TMT project, including:
  • Coordinate technical activities across the project to meet both short and longer term milestones and deliverables; work with the Project Manager and department heads to set priorities and resolve programmatic issues;
  • Work with group leaders and work package managers to ensure the design and development follow accepted TMT engineering process and risk management policy;
  • Work with group leaders and project management staff to ensure the plans and schedules for design, fabrication, integration and test are: sufficiently detailed; coordinated across project groups; and feasible with available resources;
  • Work with the system engineering team to make sure requirement definition and interface documentation are commensurate with the hardware development schedule;
  • Work with systems engineering to execute the TMT technical peer review process across all project elements to ensure product quality and engineering excellence;
  • Work with TMT work package managers and their international partners to make sure each subsystem delivery organization/institution has well defined scope, requirements, interfaces and deliverables, and has appropriate technical resources and appropriate engineering, product quality and safety processes;
  • Participate in key engineering trades, recommend resolutions to the Project Manager, and make sure timely decisions are made;
  • Working with systems engineering to maintain and periodically update the TMT project risk register with inputs from all project elements; lead development of proactive mitigation options, particularly for risks with significant consequences and/or high likelihoods;
  • Monitor progress relative to the integrated project schedule and budget and track the status of key receivables/deliverables;
  • Work with the work package teams to establish the Earned Value Management baseline, and subsequently hold monthly reviews of EVM data;
  • Ensure that technical issues are identified and dealt with in a timely manner to limit impact on the project schedule and budget;
  • Work with department heads and group leaders to develop corrective action plans where necessary to deal with unexpected problems and issues;
  • Participate in weekly status telecons, periodic progress reviews and technical reviews of the key observatory subsystems;
  • Work with the Business Manager to maintain and review liens and budget threats, and recommend disposition;
  • Provide recommendations to Project Manager and Business Manager on personnel hiring, team building, performance assessment and team collaboration.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Advanced degree in Physics or engineering
  • At least 10 years of experience in the design and construction of large scientific or high-technology projects;
  • Experience with astronomical projects is preferred
  • At least 5 years of experience as a project manager or deputy project manager; experience managing geographically distributed project teams is preferred
  • Knowledge of procurement practices for large-value technical contracts

Key Competencies

  • Excellent management and leadership skills
  • Good oral and written English communication skills
  • Good negotiation skills and ability to foster effective team cooperation
  • Ability to see to the core of an issue and define it clearly and logically
  • Ability to lead a team distributed in different geographical locations and time zones
  • Ability to explain complex technical subjects in terms a non-specialist can understand
  • Ability to represent the project effectively in technical meetings, conferences and public presentations

Work Location
The primary work location for the Deputy Project Manager position will be either at the TMT Project office in Pasadena, CA, or in Hilo, HI, but travel to the other TMT partner countries will be required, including Canada, China, Japan and India.


TMT offers a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package, including impressive retirement plans. If you are interested in applying for employment with TMT, please apply online. 

TMT is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Application Deadline: 
Friday, July 8, 2022
Current Status of Position: 
Accepting Applicants
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Attention To: 
Fengchuan Liu
Project Manager
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