Brain-Computer Interface in Virtual Reality

Reza Abbasi-Asl, Mohammad Keshavarzi, Dorian Yao Chan

We study the performance of brain computer interface (BCI) system in a virtual reality (VR) environment and compare it to 2D regular displays. First, we design a headset that consists of three components: a wearable electroencephalography (EEG) device, a VR headset and an interface. Recordings of brain and behavior from human subjects, performing a wide variety of tasks using our device are collected. The tasks consist of object rotation or scaling in VR using either mental commands or facial expression (smile and eyebrow movement). Subjects are asked to repeat similar tasks on regular 2D monitor screens. The performance in 3-D virtual reality environment is considerably higher compared to the to the 2D screen. Particularly, the median number of success rate across trials for VR setting is double of that for the 2D setting (8 successful command in VR setting compared to 4 successful command in 2D screen in 1 minute trials). Our results suggest that the design of future BCI systems can remarkably benefit from the VR setting.

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