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Asynchronous Decoding of Error Potentials During the Monitoring of a Reaching Task

  • Authors: Omedes, Jason; Iturrate, Inaki; Chavarriaga, Ricardo; Montesano, Luis

Brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) have demonstrated how they can be used for reaching tasks with both invasive and non-invasive signal recording methods. Despite the constant improvements in this field, there still exist diverse factors to overcome before achieving a natural control. In particular, the high variability of the brain signals often leads to the incorrect decoding of the subject intentions, producing unreliable behaviours in the controlled device. A possible solution to this problem would be that of correcting this erroneous decoding using a feedback signal from the user. In this work, we evaluate the possibility of decoding neural signals associated to performance monitoring (EEG-recorded error-related potentials) during a reaching task. Compared to previous works where these error potentials were recorded under scenarios with discrete movements performed by the cursor, under real conditions the cursor is moving continuously and thus the system is required to asynchronously detect any possible error. To this end, we simulated two different erroneous events during the monitoring of a reaching task: errors at the beginning of the movement, and errors happening in the middle of the trajectory being executed. Through the analysis of the recorded EEG of three subjects, we demonstrate the existence of neural correlates for the two types of elicited error potentials, and we are able to asynchronously detect them with high accuracies.

Posted on: November 3, 2015