A Comparison of Four 3-Axis-Accelerometers for Monitoring Hospital Pneumatic Tube Systems

Caroline E. Franks, James A. Krekeler, Ann M. Gronowski, Christopher W. Farnsworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Validation of hospital pneumatic tube systems (PTS) is recommended to predict and prevent errors caused by sample hemolysis. 3-Axis accelerometer dataloggers have been successfully implemented as tools for PTS validation, but the most suitable device for such validation has not been investigated. The aim of this study was to evaluate the performance of four commercially available 3-axis accelerometers for PTS validation. METHODS: PCE-VD3 (PCE), CEM DT-178A (CEM), Extech VB300 (EXT), and MSR 145 (MSR) dataloggers were placed into a single PTS carrier and repeatedly transported through one of three PTS routes. The number and magnitude of accelerations within each PTS route was collected by each device. Deming regression analysis was used to compare device performance. RESULTS: The MSR datalogger captured the greatest number of g-forces >3 g, 5 g, 10 g, and 15 g, and the greatest magnitude of g-force (26.7 g) relative to the other devices (CEM: 23.0 g, EXT: 23.3 g, PCE: 23.7 g). As a result of increased sampling frequency, the MSR recorded the lowest AUC and the greatest number of g-forces exceeding 3 g relative to the other devices. Subjectively, the data were difficult to extract from 4 tested devices. CONCLUSIONS: Commercially available dataloggers differ in their ability to detect the number and magnitude of g-forces within PTSs. We recommend that one device be used to perform all PTS evaluations, with baseline evaluations for tolerable AUC, number, and magnitude of g-forces established internally. Lack of harmonization, cumbersome data processing, and time-consuming data analysis are substantial barriers to universal implementation of dataloggers for PTS validation and monitoring.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1345-1350
Number of pages6
JournalThe journal of applied laboratory medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020


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