Motor imagery (MI) is a mental representation of motor behavior and has been widely used in electroencephalogram based brain–computer interfaces (BCIs). Several studies have demonstrated the efficacy of MI-based BCI-feedback training in post-stroke rehabilitation. However, in the earliest stage of the training, calibration data typically contain insufficient discriminability, resulting in unreliable feedback, which may decrease subjects’ motivation and even hinder their training. To improve the performance in the early stages of MI training, a novel hybrid BCI paradigm based on MI and P300 is proposed in this study. In this paradigm, subjects are instructed to imagine writing the Chinese character following the flash order of the desired Chinese character displayed on the screen. The event-related desynchronization/synchronization (ERD/ERS) phenomenon is produced with writing based on one’s imagination. Simultaneously, the P300 potential is evoked by the flash of each stroke. Moreover, a fusion method of P300 and MI classification is proposed, in which unreliable P300 classifications are corrected by reliable MI classifications. Twelve healthy naïve MI subjects participated in this study. Results demonstrated that the proposed hybrid BCI paradigm yielded significantly better performance than the single-modality BCI paradigm. The recognition accuracy of the fusion method is significantly higher than that of P300 (p < 0.05) and MI (p < 0.01). Moreover, the training data size can be reduced through fusion of these two modalities.
- Brain–computer interface
- Hybrid brain–computer interface paradigm
- Motor imagery