2023/05 Brain-computer interface enhanced by virtual reality training for controlling a lower limb exoskeleton


“This study explores the use of a brain-computer interface (BCI) based on motor imagery (MI) for the control of a lower limb exoskeleton to aid in motor recovery after a neural injury. The BCI was evaluated in ten able-bodied subjects and two patients with spinal cord injuries. Five able-bodied subjects underwent a virtual reality (VR) training session to accelerate training with the BCI. Results from this group were compared with a control group of five able-bodied subjects, and it was found that the employment of shorter training by VR did not reduce the effectiveness of the BCI and even improved it in some cases. Patients gave positive feedback about the system and were able to handle experimental sessions without reaching high levels of physical and mental exertion. These results are promising for the inclusion of BCI in rehabilitation programs, and future research should investigate the potential of the MI-based BCI system.”