Tapping into drivers’ brain signals can cut braking distances and avoid car crashes, according to scientists.
Researchers at the Berlin Institute for Technology attached electrodes to the scalps of volunteers inside a driving simulator.
The system detected the intention to brake, and cut more than 3m (10ft) off stopping distances, the team report in the Journal of Neural Engineering.
The team’s next aim is to check the system in a series of road tests.
The 18 volunteers were asked to keep 20m (66ft) behind the simulated car in front, which braked sharply at random intervals.
Scientists used a technique called electroencephalograhy (EEG) to analyse the drivers’ brain signals.
The system was able to pinpoint the intention to brake 13 hundredths of a second before the driver applied pressure to the brakes.
The team reported that at a speed of 100km/h (65m/h) the braking distance was reduced by 3.66 meters (12 feet).