I have just retired after 38 years of continous employment in the field of astronomical engineering. It has been my priviledge to play a leading role in some of the most exciting and challenging ground based astronomical projects during these years. I am in good health and wish to offer my experience to projects where it may be of value in a consultant/advisory manner.


Associate Engineer. January, 1958 - June, 1966. Lick Observatory, U.C., Mt. Hamilton, California.

Here I found my life's work. Based on my education and experience in industrial instrumentation I was hired as a design engineer to participate in the completion of the construction of the, then, second largest optical telescope, and to design the mechanical parts of the original instrumentation to complement the capacities of that 3 meter telescope, which is still an important and active telescope today.

Chief Engineer. June, 1966 - September, 1985. Institute for Astronomy (I.f.A), University of Hawaii, (UH)

I accepted an offer - from the implementor of the audacious idea to build an observatory on the top of the 13800 ft. high Mauna Kea volcanic peak on the island of Hawaii - to become the engineer in charge of the design and construction of the basic observatory infrastructure with two 0.6 meter telescopes and the flagship 2.4 meter telescope for the University of Hawaii. Those years were filled with challenges: dealing with contractors working under difficult circumstances, designing instrumentation that was hopefully pushing the frontiers, accommodating the requirements of the international partners at the eventually growing establishment.

1973 - Design consultant in Paris, France, to the Canada-France-Hawaii telescope corporation, working on the 3.6 meter telescope project, planned for Mauna Kea and completed in 1979.

1974 - Consultant to the United Kingdom Infrared Telescope project, which developed a 3.8 meter ``new technology'' infrared telescope to be placed on Mauna Kea. This was completed in 1979.

1974-79 - I.f.A responsible engineer for the development and construction of the InfraRed Telescope Facility (IRTF), a 3 meter Infrared Telescope, to be constructed to support the Voyager missions to Jupiter and the other outer planets. This facility is sponsored by NASA and operated by the University of Hawaii on Mauna Kea.

1980-81 - Visiting engineer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) working on a space borne spectrograph for MIT and on the conceptual design of the 1.8 meter Space Watch Camera, for the Lunar Planetary Laboratory of the University of Arizona. The Space Camera concepts were developed to the level of a complete fabrication bid package, but expected NASA funding did not materialize.

1984 - On leave from U.H. as a consultant to the U.C. Berkeley T.M.T. (ten meter telescope) project. Charged with the conceptual design of all the mechanical aspects for the telescope and its anciliary mechanisms, I supervised the development of a design package which in the spring of 1985 became the basis for the detailed engineering of the W.M. Keck telescope. The design work for the revolutionary primary mirror system was done by U.C. engineers and the conceptual structural design by a consultant in San Francisco during this same period.

Telescope Structure and Dome Manager. April, 1985 - April, 1994. California Association for Research in Astronomy, (CARA), in Pasadena, California (to 1988), and Kamuela, Hawaii. CARA is a joint venture by the University of California, (U.C.) and the California Institute of Technology, (CalTech). The purpose of CARA was to design, build and operate two ten-meter optical astronomical telescopes at the Mauna Kea Observatory in Hawaii.

1985 - During the spring the W.M.Keck observatory project became a reality. I was offered and accepted the position of Telescope Structure Manager. My responsibilities in this position were varied:


Initially overseeing the detailed engineering efforts on the telescope and dome designs beeing performed by outside contractors. Inspect progress at fabricators in Sweden, Spain, Italy, Canada and domestically. Later oversee the field erection of the structures and ultimately accept the finished product on behalf of the association.


Developing the concepts of the myriad of mechanical parts that together with the telescope and dome form the essential components of an observatory, cooperating with my colleagues responsible for other aspects of the project such as drives and controls or optical elements, participating in the managerial parts dealing with planning and budgets.

Directing a small group of engineers and designers doing the in-house designs of all the support equipment required and implementing the fabrication, delivery to the site, and integration in the facility.

The hands-on experience of making these very large machines really work, after the contractors have left, is the ultimate reward for the years of plain hard work.

The Keck I and Keck II budgets combined are of the order of $ 160 million, of that amount my budget responsibilities were of the order of $ 30 million.

By the time Keck I was dedicated in the fall of 1992 work had already begun on Keck II. As Keck II is a clone of Keck I, but for some minor details, I was able to assist the designers of the HET spectrographic survey telescope, which is a joint venture between Penn State University and the University of Texas. This low cost telescope has a spherical primary mirror composed of 92 hexagonal segments forming an 11 meter equivalent reflecting surface. The telescope is well along in construction and is expected to be operational in 1997.

Staff Engineer. April 1994 - March 1996. CARA.

My last two years at Keck were dedicated to supporting the next generation of telescope engineers in their efforts to complete Keck II - which will be dedicated in May 1996.


I received all my formal education in Denmark, culminating in a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Copenhagen Higher Institute of Technology.


My career in ``astronomical engineering'' has provided me with an unending source of challenges, dealing with 24-inch I-beams and # 00 screws in search of means for making 250 ton machines point to an accuracy of 0.1 arc second. The fundamental contributions I have made to the ultimate success of Mauna Kea becoming the primary astronomical observing site in the world is a source of great pleasure to me.

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