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Turning brainwaves into robot controlling cues

04 May 2013

NTNU student Angel Perez Garcia can make a robot move exactly as he wants using nothing more than eye, eyebrow or other facial movement.

Student Angel Garcia use his eyes, eyebrows and other parts of his face to make the robot move (photo: Thor Nielsen)

"I use the movements of my eyes, eyebrows and other parts of my face. With my eyebrows I can select which of the robot's joints I want to move," say Garcia, a Master's student at the NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology).

Facial grimaces generate major electrical activity (EEG signals) across our heads, and the same happens when Garcia concentrates on a symbol, such as a flashing light, on a computer monitor.

The electrodes attached to his head read the activity in his brain. The signals are then interpreted by a processor which in turn sends a message to the robot to make it move in a pre-defined way.

"I can focus on a selection of lights on the screen. The robot’s movements depend on which light I select and the type of activity generated in my brain", says Garcia.

"The idea of controlling a robot simply by using our thoughts [EEG brainwave activity] is fascinating and futuristic", he adds.


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