Brain Waves Control Drones, With DARPA Tech
A person with a microchip implant can now pilot a swarm of drones by sending signals directly from their brain, an ability that also should work for full-scale aircraft, according to researchers at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The technology was discussed at a recent symposium held by DARPA, in Maryland. “The signals from those aircraft can be delivered directly back to the brain so that the brain of that user [or pilot] can also perceive the environment,” said Justin Sanchez, director of DARPA’s biological technology office.
DARPA officials at the symposium also said they have advanced the technology so a user now can steer multiple jets at once, according to a report from DefenseOne.com. Working with a paralyzed volunteer, the researchers were able to not only send but also receive signals from the aircraft. “It’s taken a number of years to try and figure this out,” Sanchez said. The work builds on research from 2015, when a paralyzed woman was able to steer a virtual F-35 Joint Strike Fighter by sending signals from her brain using only a small, surgically-implanted microchip.