SHOCKTrail answers the questions you always wondered about!

The opportunity to deliver a prototype product to a customer was the ideal opportunity to investigate some of these questions. We shipped the SHOCKTrail unit switched on and were amazed at what we discovered in answer to these questions…

  • How rough is the treatment of your product during shipment?  
  • And, exactly when and where does the rough stuff happen?
  • And how hot/cold and humid, does it get along the way?
  • Is the parcel/wooden crate getting wet?
  • And, where does your product actuall go on the way to its final destination?
SHOCKTrail during transport

Monitor where, when and how big the shocks are during transport

The SHOCKTrail unit which measures 16cm  x 18 cm x 8 cm and weighs 1.5Kg was shipped via our normal courier company from our company in Worcester to our client in the North Midlands.

The packet had no extra markings on it. Even though we had not marked with “Fragile/Handle With Care” stickers, we were still amazed at just how quickly it was in the rough and tumble of the delivery chain!

SHOCKTrail detected the highest abuse at 11g

Within minutes of leaving our premises the SHOCKTrail had been subject to a shock of nearly 11g [10.89g] in one axis and 5g & 6g in the other 2 axis. We received email and SMS alerts within 2 minutes of the events happening.

So what does 11 g feel like?

Damage from acceleration depends on the magnitude of the acceleration, the direction, the duration, and the mass and physical structure being subjected to it. Some roller coasters get to 3 or 4g at the bottom of the initial drop, or going around a tight turn.

shocktrailThis dragster can accelerate from zero to 160 kilometres per hour in 0.86 seconds. This is a horizontal acceleration of 5.3 g.

The 11g was probably the result of dropping the package onto a hard surface. Clearly the smaller the mass of the physical object concerned the higher the g forces that are possible. So, for example, quality mechanical wristwatches are designed and tested to withstand thousands of g force.


We had deliberately set the alarm thresholds quite low at 3g, so that as the SHOCKTrail continuously monitors, it would “wake up” and send us alerts by SMS and email with details of the shock that had triggered the alarm and the location of where it had happened. We didn’t expect to see 11g so quickly!  


SHOCKTrail measurements

  • SHOCKTrail logo and parametersAcceleration at high speed with a tri-axial +/-200g range accelerometer
  • Ambient temperature and humidity with the shipping carate/parcel
  • Two highly accurate moisture content inputs which can be fitted internally to wooden crates
  • All of these can have high and low alarms set via the online portal – your SmartHub.


Moisture ingress into goods in transit can be a major problem – necessitating some drastic action – but knowing exactly when and where failures are occuring can be critical information, available from SHOCKTrail.



Just how far is it from A to B? ShockTrail may shock you!

SHOCKtrail delivery journey

SHOCKtrail delivery journey

As you can see the difference between as the crow flies and as the package moves can be significant – imagine if this was a surface shipment to the other side of the world!


The detail on the 11 g shock was interesting too:


SHOCKTrail 11 g handling shock

SHOCKTrail 11 g handling shock










The potential for producers and shippers of high value, sensitive or mission critical goods is clear. With SHOCKTrail, you know where your goods are, and where they have been, what’s happened in transit, in terms of shocks and environmental conditions, like temperature, humidity and wood moisture.

For more information or to discuss your particular needs contact

To view SHOCKTrail on line go here

Posted by Jon Penn

Jon Penn, Director@CDL, regularly writes for the blog. .