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Drive car without using hands or feet

Researcher Zhang Zhao gives a demo at Nankai University by using a brain signal reading equipment. Image: Reuters

Bengaluru, India | Red Newswire | Dec 11, 2015 Last Updated at 12:28 PM IST.

Your hours of driving practice are redundant to me. You know why? Because I drive my car using brain power. No, I am not a super human, neither I am the guy from the future; It is just that some researchers have made it possible. Yes, it is a reality as the Chinese have successfully tested this new technology where in you can drive car using your brain power.

China’s first mind-controlled car has been developed by researchers in the north-east port city of Tianjin. They say that it is the country’s first car that uses nothing but brain power to drive. Researchers from Nankai University spent two years to turn this into a reality.

It works very simply, just wear a brain signal reading tool, think of the action you want your car to do, for example stop, lock and unlock the vehicle etc and all this is done without using your hands or feet.

You might be thinking what about the other signals or thoughts that get generated into my mind whilst driving. Well they have developed the system, such that only relevant signals will get captured. The computer processes the signals to categorize and recognize people’s intention, than translates them into control command to the car.

“The equipment comprises of sixteen sensors that capture EEG (electroencephalogram) signals from the driver’s brain. The tester’s EEG signals are picked up by this (brain signal-reading) equipment and transmitted wirelessly to the computer. The core of the whole flow is to process the EEG signals, which is done on the computer” said Zhang Zhao, member of the research team.

Of course each technology helps the different people in different ways. So does the Associate Professor Duan Feng, from the university’s College of Computer and Control Engineering who led the project thinks. He emphasized that the technology is aimed at better serving human beings, and that it might soon be possible to combine brain controlled technology and driverless cars, such as the Google Self Driving Car. The researchers say their initial idea was inspired by helping disabled people who are physically unable to steer cars. “There are two starting points of this project. The first one is to provide a driving method without using hands or feet for the disabled who are unable to move freely; and secondly, to provide healthy people with a new and more intellectualized driving mode,” Zhang said.

At present the vehicle, in collaboration with Chinese car manufacturer Great Wall Motor, can only drive in a straight direction, and there are no plans to put it into production.

By: Rishi sharma @Rednewswire

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