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A Brain Controlled Wheelchair to Navigate in Familiar Environments

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7 Author(s)
Rebsamen, B. ; Dept. of Mech. Eng., Nat. Univ. of Singapore, Singapore, Singapore ; Cuntai Guan ; Haihong Zhang ; Chuanchu Wang
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While brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) can provide communication to people who are locked-in, they suffer from a very low information transfer rate. Further, using a BCI requires a concentration effort and using it continuously can be tiring. The brain controlled wheelchair (BCW) described in this paper aims at providing mobility to BCI users despite these limitations, in a safe and efficient way. Using a slow but reliable P300 based BCI, the user selects a destination amongst a list of predefined locations. While the wheelchair moves on virtual guiding paths ensuring smooth, safe, and predictable trajectories, the user can stop the wheelchair by using a faster BCI. Experiments with nondisabled subjects demonstrated the efficiency of this strategy. Brain control was not affected when the wheelchair was in motion, and the BCW enabled the users to move to various locations in less time and with significantly less control effort than other control strategies proposed in the literature.

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Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:18 ,  Issue: 6 )