Monday December 16, 2019
Home Lead Story SpaceX to Lay...

SpaceX to Lay off 10% of Workers Due to ‘Difficult Challenges’

But SpaceX's new products are expected to cost billions of dollars to develop

0
//
SpaceX, falcon
SpaceX to lay off 10% of workers due to 'difficult challenges'. VOA

As SpaceX attempts to get two expensive projects off the ground, the US-based private spaceflight company said it would lay off 10 per cent of its roughly 6,000-person workforce.
“To continue delivering for our customers and to succeed in developing interplanetary spacecraft and a global space-based Internet, SpaceX must become a leaner company,” the Elon Musk-led company was quoted as saying in a statement on Friday by CNN.

“This action is taken only due to the extraordinarily difficult challenges ahead and would not otherwise be necessary,” the statement added.

SpaceX has a booming business but its plans are very ambitious. While it has a contract with NASA to deliver cargo to the International Space Station (ISS), the company is now planning to start flying astronauts to the ISS for NASA sometime this year.

In September, Musk estimated SpaceX would spend between $2 billion and $10 billion developing an ultra-powerful spaceship and rocket system, recently renamed Starship and Super Heavy.

SpaceX also plans to use the technology to fly tourists to space and, potentially, one day send humans to Mars, CNN said.

Elon Musk, spacex
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk. IANS

Musk on Thursday offered a glimpse of the company’s Starship test flight rocket, dubbed the “Hopper”.

SpaceX will conduct a “hopper test” of its Mars spaceship prototype as early as next month, acording to Musk, The Los Angeles Times reported.

The company is also developing a constellation of satellites that could one day beam high-speed Internet down to the Earth.

Also Read- Sony to Introduce a Fresh Strategy For its Mobile Division

SpaceX was recently valued at $30.5 billion after initiating a $500 million equity sale in December. The company also took on about $250 million in debt last year in its first loan sale, according to the Wall Street Journal.

But SpaceX’s new products are expected to cost billions of dollars to develop. (IANS)

Next Story

Use of Robots in the US Increases Tremendously

Here are the States Where Robots Rule

0
Robots
Robots have replaced many human resources in USA and this has affected the economy as well. (Representational Image). Pixabay

By Dora Mekouar

The use of robots in the U.S. workplace more than doubled from 2009 to 2017, the bulk of them in manufacturing. But the extent of manufacturing job losses in the Midwest was masked by the economic boom of the past 10 years.

“A growing economy independent of technology, independent of robotics, has been able to absorb, at least at the national level … people who may have gotten displaced,” said William M. Rodgers III, professor of public policy and chief economist at the Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University.

Rodgers co-authored a report on how robots are affecting workers and their wages.

Industrial Production robots
An assembly line laborer works alongside collaborative robots, left, on a chainsaw production line at the Stihl Inc. production plant in Virginia Beach. VOA

While robots haven’t had a nationwide impact on the employment rate, some states in the Midwest have twice as many robots as all other regions and  are suffering as a result of the rise of robotization.

Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin have the highest concentration of robots, primarily in manufacturing.

These industrial robots tend to perform repetitive tasks, such as assembly and packaging, or sealing, welding and painting, at a very fast rate.

The workers most affected by the machine takeover are young, less-educated people, with black men and women experiencing the greatest job losses. Those who find new jobs in different industries often have to settle for lower pay.

“If the displacement is large enough, if they get pushed into retail or they get pushed into hospitality and leisure, the supply of them in that industry or that sector increases,” Rodgers said. “And if demand for workers is not growing fast enough, you begin to see a decline in wages.”

The regions with the most robots overall include: 

Ford F Series Recall robots
Robots weld the cab of a 2018 Ford F-150 truck on the assembly line at the Ford Rouge assembly plant in Dearborn, Mich. Ford is recalling 327,000 F-Series pickup trucks in North America. VOA

1. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, California  

2. Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, Illinois

3. Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land, Texas

4. Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Arizona 

5. Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Michigan 

6. Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, Wisconsin 

7. Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pennsylvania/New Jersey/Delaware/Maryland 

8. San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California 

9. Indianapolis, Indiana 

10. Cleveland-Elyria, Ohio

The good news is that these displaced workers could ultimately end up in higher-paid positions, if the right safety nets are put into place.

“Approaches that can help cushion the blow for people who do get displaced by technology,” Rodgers says, “and then also to have education and training programs that allow individuals who do lose their jobs to be able to transition to other occupations.”

Also Read- Deep Sleep Can Reduce Higher Anxiety Levels

Rodgers says now is the time to prepare for the rise of the robots.

“What better time to be able to help people who are getting bullied, so to speak, by technology or getting bullied, so to speak, by globalization?” Rodgers says. “Times of prosperity is the best time… to invest in all Americans.” (VOA)