Objective This study aims (1) to develop an automated and fast approach for detecting visual evoked potentials (VEPs) in single trials and (2) to apply the single-trial VEP detection approach in designing a real-time and high-performance brain–computer interface (BCI) system.
Methods The single-trial VEP detection approach uses common spatial pattern (CSP) as a spatial filter and wavelet filtering (WF) a temporal–spectral filter to jointly enhance the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of single-trial VEPs. The performance of the joint spatial–temporal–spectral filtering approach was assessed in a four-command VEP-based BCI system.
Results The offline classification accuracy of the BCI system was significantly improved from 67.6 ± 12.5% (raw data) to 97.3 ± 2.1% (data filtered by CSP and WF). The proposed approach was successfully implemented in an online BCI system, where subjects could make 20 decisions in one minute with classification accuracy of 90%.
Conclusions The proposed single-trial detection approach is able to obtain robust and reliable VEP waveform in an automatic and fast way and it is applicable in VEP based online BCI systems.
Significance This approach provides a real-time and automated solution for single-trial detection of evoked potentials or event-related potentials (EPs/ERPs) in various paradigms, which could benefit many applications such as BCI and intraoperative monitoring.