Category Archives: Education

UN urges Jordan to open borders to fleeing Syrians

GENEVA: The United Nations human rights office and refugee agency UNHCR urged Jordan on Tuesday to open its border to Syrians trying to escape an escalating conflict in the southwest region of Deraa.

An estimated 270,000 people have fled air and ground attacks over the past two weeks, the United Nations said on Monday

“We call on the Jordanian government to keep its border open and for other countries in the region to step up and receive the fleeing civilians,” UN human rights spokeswoman Liz Throssell told a news briefing.

UNHCR spokesman Andre Mahecic said an estimated 40,000 Syrians were massed near the border with Jordan, which already hosts 650,000 registered Syrian refugees.

Shouting CEO, changing rules: Inside Tesla's Model 3-building sprint

SAN FRANCISCO: A tense and short-tempered chief executive Elon Musk barked at engineers on the Fremont, California assembly line. Tesla Inc pulled workers from other departments to keep pumping out the Model 3 electric sedans, disrupting production of the Model S and X lines. And weekend shifts were mandatory.

Tesla pulled out all the stops in the final week of June to meet its goal of making 5,000 Model 3s in a week, according to employees who spoke to Reuters.

Whether Tesla can do it week in and week out – and without relying on overtime and extra hands – is another question, and one that weighed on investors Monday, as shares slumped 2.3 per cent.

Leading up to Sunday morning’s production milestone, Musk paced the Model 3 line, snapping at his engineers when the around-the-clock production slowed or stopped due to problems with robots, one worker said. Tesla built a new line in just two weeks in a huge tent outside the main factory, an unprecedented move in an industry that takes years to plan out its assembly lines, and said the tented production area accounted for 20 per cent of the Model 3s produced last week.

“They were borrowing people from our line all day to cover their (Model 3) breaks so the line would continue to move,” said a Model S worker on Sunday.

Because of the focus on the Model 3, the S line is about 800 cars behind, the worker said.

“They’ve been throwing Model 3s ahead of the S to get painted to try to assure that they make their goal of 5,000,” the worker said. “The paint department can’t handle the volume.”

Disruption of the Model S and X lines could threaten Tesla’s target of building 100,000 of those vehicles in 2018. Tesla built 49,489 of those cars in the first half of this year.

Asked about the potential S and X impact, Tesla said it also produced 1,913 of those vehicles during the last week of the quarter along with its Model 3s.

Tesla said it built a total of 28,578 Model 3s in the second quarter, and 40,989 since production began last July.

Last week’s big push also brought a rewrite of the employee attendance policy. After mandatory weekend shifts were assigned, two workers said, Tesla rescinded a policy promising workers at least one week’s notice before weekend work.

“The manager and supervisor are verbally going around and saying: ‘If you don’t come in, you’ll be written up’,” one of the workers told Reuters last week.

Some employees are worried the frenetic pace plus long hours could burn out workers. One employee said they were told to keep working until they met their daily production mark, not when their shifts ended.

“They said starting tomorrow be prepared to work up to 12 hours,” said the Model S employee on Monday. “It’s gonna be basically 12 hours from now on and I’ve got a feeling it’s gonna be six days a week.”

To make its number, Tesla was willing to “spend any kind of money,” a Gigafactory worker said, pointing to the new battery assembly-line flown in from Europe via cargo planes to the Gigafactory in May.

In the morning of Sunday, July 5, about five hours after the self-imposed second-quarter deadline had passed, the number 5,000 flashed on a countdown screen viewed by Tesla’s Model 3 assembly-line workers. The Model 3 itself bore a “5,000” sign in its front window.

Tesla said on Monday that some of its Model 3 production would be on break as part of the July 4 holiday, with production to resume on Thursday. Tesla plans to build 6,000 Model 3s per week by August.

But the worker told to expect longer shifts warned that pushing assembly-line workers too hard could backfire.

“He (Musk) is gonna go through an awful lot of people because people are gonna start getting hurt left and right,” by the fast-moving assembly line, the worker said.

“There’s only so fast a person can move.”

Prannoy stuns Lin Dan at Indonesia Open

HS Prannoy stunned the legendary Lin Dan of China while compatriot Sameer Verma pipped Rasmus Gemke of Denmark to advance to the second round of the Indonesia Open badminton event on Tuesday.

SC has asked to explore but can Delhi afford hydrogen fuel?

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court (SC) has asked the Delhi government and Environment Pollution Prevention & Control Authority (EPCA) to explore the feasibility of introducing hydrogen-run public transport buses in the city—as against regular electric buses, in the wake of the capital city’s foul air problem.

With the Delhi government informing the court that it had initiated the process of purchasing 1,000 electric buses, the court said it was better to leapfrog from Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) to hydrogen fuel .

The SC cited the western US state of California as an example to look up to. Here is a look at how viable hydrogen fuel cells are:

What are hydrogen fuel cells?

In simple terms, hydrogen-fuel cells produce electricity by combining hydrogen with oxygen—two elements abundant in the world.

Who uses it?

California has a little over 4,000 hydrogen-fuel cell cars on the road and 33 hydrogen fuel stations. The technology was first introduced in California in 2015. Rockets have been using fuel cells for decades.

So what’s the problem?

Hydrogen and oxygen are cheap—breaking up water will yield them—but the fuel cell technology is not. Each of California’s refilling station cost around $2.5 million, or Rs 17.1 crore, even after heavy subsidies. The company that set up 16 refilling stations got a grant of $28 million.

Moreover, a hydrogen fuel station needs a ‘cooling down’ period after filling each vehicle and stations in California can fill only 50-60 tanks a day.

To make hydrogen fuel cell one needs platinum—a precious metal that trades for $839 an ounce. The metal is only found largely in South Africa and Russia, which will mean further fattening of the import bill, if hydrogen fuel is to be used.

SC has asked to explore but can Delhi afford hydrogen fuel?

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court (SC) has asked the Delhi government and Environment Pollution Prevention & Control Authority (EPCA) to explore the feasibility of introducing hydrogen-run public transport buses in the city—as against regular electric buses, in the wake of the capital city’s foul air problem.

With the Delhi government informing the court that it had initiated the process of purchasing 1,000 electric buses, the court said it was better to leapfrog from Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) to hydrogen fuel .

The SC cited the western US state of California as an example to look up to. Here is a look at how viable hydrogen fuel cells are:

What are hydrogen fuel cells?

In simple terms, hydrogen-fuel cells produce electricity by combining hydrogen with oxygen—two elements abundant in the world.

Who uses it?

California has a little over 4,000 hydrogen-fuel cell cars on the road and 33 hydrogen fuel stations. The technology was first introduced in California in 2015. Rockets have been using fuel cells for decades.

So what’s the problem?

Hydrogen and oxygen are cheap—breaking up water will yield them—but the fuel cell technology is not. Each of California’s refilling station cost around $2.5 million, or Rs 17.1 crore, even after heavy subsidies. The company that set up 16 refilling stations got a grant of $28 million.

Moreover, a hydrogen fuel station needs a ‘cooling down’ period after filling each vehicle and stations in California can fill only 50-60 tanks a day.

To make hydrogen fuel cell one needs platinum—a precious metal that trades for $839 an ounce. The metal is only found largely in South Africa and Russia, which will mean further fattening of the import bill, if hydrogen fuel is to be used.

BCCI issues advisory to state units for hosting T20 events

The BCCI on Tuesday issued a 10-point advisory to its affiliated units for conducting T20 tournaments. State associations staging these tournaments are now required to ensure strict compliance with this advisory, which, at the moment, seems to have been devised by the members in the Special General Meeting (SGM) on June 22.

Preview: Sweden take on Switzerland in last-16 clash

Dalic backs 'world class' Modric

Dalic backs 'world class' Modric

Dalic backs 'world class' Modric