Students complete John Deere design project

January 25, 2013

PLATTEVILLE, Wis. — Three University of Wisconsin-Platteville industrial engineering students helped the John Deere W6 warehouse in Dubuque, Iowa better use its space and improve the flow of materials and storage as part of their Facilities Design course. Jason Haberman of Jefferson, Wis.; Adam Heiking of Sun Prairie, Wis.; and Adam Kaiser of Kieler, Wis. analyzed the warehouse to research how to help it run more efficiently.

“The project is similar to what engineers have to do in any job, so students get real-world experience,” said Dr. Swaminat Balachandran, UW-Platteville engineering professor who teaches the course.

Some recommendations Haberman, Heiking and Kaiser made to John Deere were to install industrial shelving, purchase additional returnable containers to reduce freight costs and better utilize floor space, and identified several areas where space could be better utilized.

“The project gave us exposure to John Deere and showed us how data gathering will be a major component of most engineering jobs,” said Haberman.

“I learned not to be afraid to make recommendations,” said Kaiser. “As long as you work hard, double check your work and be realistic, every idea is worth presenting.”

Balachandran has facilitated more than 350 design projects at UW-Platteville since 1985. Businesses and industries interested in ideas for improving processes, may contact Balachandran at (608) 342-1718 or

Contact: Swaminat Balachandran, UW-Platteville Engineering Department, (608) 342-1718,

Written By: Nicole Smith, UW-Platteville University Information and Communications, (608) 342-1194,


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