Feeds

Falling axe strikes space shuttle workers

Services no longer required

Application security programs and practises

This Friday, 515 employees of major space shuttle contractor United Space Alliance (USA) will be given their pink slips, and will join 1,550 former colleagues who were shown the door immediately after the landing of the shuttle Atlantis on 21 July.

USA - a joint venture between Boeing and Lockheed Martin - expects to lay off a further 285 workers by the end of the month, reducing it to just 3,100 staff compared to a 2003 peak of 10,500.

The axe is also falling on shuttle-dependent staff at Boeing and Lockheed Martin themselves. The former announced last week that it would be letting 260 people go, while the latter was preparing to ditch 100 employees from NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, where the shuttle's external fuel tanks were manufactured.

Three hundred Michoud workers have been spared the chop. A hundred will be "closing out shuttle contracts for another six to 12 months", while the remaining 200 will be transferred to the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle.

In California, meanwhile, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, which built the shuttle's main engines, shed 300 jobs on 31 July, although not all of these redundancies were shuttle-related.

Utah-based Alliant Techsystems was responsible for the shuttle's solid rocket boosters, and will lose around 1,600 jobs as a result of the shuttle programme's death. There's more on all of the above redundancies here.

According to the BBC, space shuttle job casualties total around 8,000, including NASA Kennedy Space Center staff and contractors. Further collateral damage is likely in towns like Titusville in Florida, whose economy largely depends on Kennedy launches. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Flamewars in SPAAACE: cooler fires hint at energy efficiency
Experiment aboard ISS shows we should all chill out for cleaner engines
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.