Date of Defense



Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Liwana Bringelson

Second Advisor

Joseph Petro

Third Advisor

Dale Bronkema


Delphi manufactures the Hydraulic Lash Adjuster (HLA), a small engine part, at their facility in Grand Rapids, MI. The focus of this project is the packaging for the HLA. This part is shipped to customers in Europe in a coated cardboard box. From the 1995 sales data, used packaging that was disposed of in landfills was 18.5 tons. Environmental concerns have lead to the investigation of alternative packaging to reduce landfill waste.

Criteria have been set forth that was used to judge solutions. The criteria were: reduction in packaging waste, protection of part, reclamation of energy in packaging, financial comparison, ergonomic impact, and customer receiving requirements.

This report discusses the thorough investigation of the packaging system identification of characteristics of the product, and research completed on several alternatives. Each alternative is explained, and the benefits and drawbacks of each are stated. Each solution falls into one of four categories: change the product, recycle the packaging, reuse the packaging, and reduce the packaging. Each alternative was judged according to the set of criteria. A box made of corrugated polyethylene was found to be the most favorable alternative. It best met the requirements of the set of criteria.

This solution is to be implemented by designing a packaging system out of polyethylene. Testing must be done to determine the size and strength of packaging required. Vendors should be contacted to determine the best source. Finally, waste management companies in Europe should be contacted to determine the best method of recycling the used packaging material.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Campus Only