Gang Li and Wan-Young Chung, Department of Electronic Engineering, Pukyong National University, Korea. 2014
Currently, driver drowsiness detectors using video based technology is being widely studied. Eyelid closure degree (ECD) is the main measure of the video-based methods, however, drawbacks such as brightness limitations and practical hurdles such as distraction of the drivers limits its success. This study presents a way to compute the ECD using EEG sensors instead of video-based methods. The premise is that the ECD exhibits a linear relationship with changes of the occipital EEG. A total of 30 subjects are included in this study: ten of them participated in a simple proof-of-concept experiment to verify the linear relationship between ECD and EEG, and then twenty participated in a monotonous highway driving experiment in a driving simulator environment to test the robustness of the linear relationship in real-life applications. Taking the video-based method as a reference, the Alpha power percentage from the O2 channel is found to be the best input feature for linear regression estimation of the ECD. The best overall squared correlation coefficient (SCC, denoted by r2) and mean squared error (MSE) validated by linear support vector regression model and leave one subject out method is r2 = 0.930 and MSE = 0.013. The proposed linear EEG-ECD model can achieve 87.5% and 70.0% accuracy for male and female subjects, respectively, for a driver drowsiness application, percentage eyelid closure over the pupil over time (PERCLOS). This new ECD estimation method not only addresses the video-based method drawbacks, but also makes ECD estimation more computationally efficient and easier to implement in EEG sensors in a real time way.