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TMT Common Software (CSW) Diagram - The Common Software and its role towards integrating the other TMT subsystems, is represented by the green bar. The arrows show the subsystems that use CSW - Image Credit: TMT International Observatory

TMT Common Software Successfully Passes Pre-Shipment Review

Pasadena, CA – 20 September, 2019 – The Thirty Meter Telescope Common Software (CSW), which has been under development the past two years, recently passed its pre-shipment review, meaning it is consistent with its original requirements and design and is ready for its future integration within TMT’s software infrastructure.

“This milestone demonstrates the quality of the CSW software that has been developed, and also confirms that the TMT software quality assurance and development process is viable,” says Kim Gillies, TMT Lead Software Architect. “What’s more, it is the first TMT software component to be completed and ready for shipment. This achievement successfully shows that working with our India-partner and India-based vendor development team, we can develop software remotely following the formal Preliminary and Final Design Reviews, while under the management of the Project Office.”

The CSW sub-system provides the communication and operational infrastructure needed to integrate the various TMT sub-systems. It establishes the software communication backbone and interfaces necessary for the observatory-wide configuration, command, control, and status reporting. CSW will be layered on top of the IT infrastructure network provided by the future Communications and Information sub-system.

The CSW package consists of a number of services, each providing a single required function needed for integrating the subsystems. Its novel design reuses similar services available in the open-source community and provides astronomy-oriented interfaces that isolate the underlying products. This approach has allowed TMT CSW to be completed relatively quickly while taking advantage of high-quality software available on the Internet.

The software package has been completed from the perspective of implementing all the requirements that can be verified at this stage of the project. All CSW software functionalities have been completed and verified through a series of automated tests for user stories that are tied to software requirements. Some remaining requirements will be verified at the telescope site.

All systems engineering, technical design and programming documentation as well as paper trails were made available and presented at the review. The CSW technical manuals cover the product data package, the required verification reports and certifications and the verification of the risk assessment mitigations. Detailed information on the finalization of the assembly, integration and verification plan, as well as shipping, packaging and storage plans were also provided.

A CSW maintenance work package is already in place and is being executed by the CSW development team. This maintenance work is required to keep the product and documentation up-to-date and compatible with other TMT components under development, and provide support for other TMT groups using the CSW until its integration at the telescope and through the end of the telescope’s construction.

“We have built an effective tri-partite collaboration between the main Project Office in Pasadena, the India TMT Coordination Center (ITCC) in Bangalore and the ThoughtWorks Company, our vendor based in Pune, India,” says Francisco Delgado, TMT Observatory Software Project Manager. “All these teams have cooperated very effectively. Passing the Pre-Shipment review is a very powerful demonstration that the software team will be capable of delivering the other software components in the future.”


TMT CSW is part of the India partner workshare, managed by ITCC. CSW has been developed by ThoughtWorks Technologies in Pune, India. ThoughtWorks team members are currently developing another TMT software component, the Executive Software product, while handling maintenance for CSW.

Representatives of the project software group, systems engineering, quality assurance, and safety, as well as an external expert from the Giant Magellan Telescope Organization attended the full-day review which was held at the Pasadena Project Office.


Participants of the TMT Common Software Pre-Shipment Review on 18 September 2019, at the TMT Project Office in Pasadena, CA.

Participants of the TMT Common Software Pre-Shipment Review on 18 September 2019, at the TMT Project Office in Pasadena, CA.

From left: Francisco Delgado, John Rogers, Marianne Cox (Giant Magellan Telescope Organization), Gelys Trancho, Jason Weiss, Jimmy Johnson and Kim Gillies.  Remote participants: Edward Chapin (National Research Council Canada, Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics)   -  Image Credit: TMT International Observatory

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