Direct Brain-to-Brain Communication Pilot Study

Researchers Rajesh Rao and Andrea Stocco at the University of Washington have successfully connected two human brains over the Internet in an experiment called "Direct Brain-to-Brain Communication in Humans" that allowed Rao to move Stocco’s finger remotely using only his thoughts.

The Internet was a way to connect computers, and now it can be a way to connect brains"
- Stocco said in the team's project press release.

The researchers used electroencephalography (EEG) and Transcranial magnetic stimulation(TMS) technologies as a way or reading brain activity in one researcher and delivering stimulation to a particular part of the brain of the other. The task for Rao and Stocco was to collaboratively play a computer game together with the mission of saving a city from being hit by rocket fire.

When Rao was supposed to complete his role to stop the rockets before they reached the cities, he imagined moving his right hand to hit the “fire” button. Stocco sitting across campus in another lab would in turn receive this stimulation via a TMS coil placed near the region of his brain that controls his right hand motor controls and the changing magnetic field would cause him to involuntarily move to make contact with "fire" key and shoot down the missle.

Direct Brain-to-Brain Communication Pilot Study
A look at research expirement using the Internet to pass brain activity

More details on the experiment can be found at: http://homes.cs.washington.edu/~rao/brain2brain/experiment.html or watching the researchers demonstration in the video below.

Additional: UW Press Release, Research Site

Image Credits: University of Washington

Video

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