Instead of Helmet displays and joystick, quadrapelegic uses neural implants to fly F35 Simulator

Jan Scheuermann has been paralyzed since 2003 because of a neurodegenerative condition. In 2012, she agreed to be fitted with two probes on the surface of her brain in the motor cortex area responsible for right hand and arm movements.

In the last two years, she has tolerated those probes better than expected; as a result, she’s been the subject of increasingly sophisticated experiments in conjunction with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and DARPA’s Revolutionizing Prosthetics program, to determine just how much she can do simply by thinking about it.

She flew a simulator directly from neurosignaling.

Two probes on the surface of her brain in the motor cortex area were used.

Jan Scheuermann uses a flight simulator as part of a joint DARPA-University of Pittsburgh Medical Center experiment. (Courtesy of DARPA/UPMC)

Normal F35 interfaces are through Helmet Displays

The new F-35’s are each fitted with six Distributed Aperture Systems (DAS), which collect information about the ground below and the air around the fighter plane. This data is then digitized both as video and data, with labels and flight paths layered over as necessary. When a pilot looks down, the helmet mounted display (HMD) lets them see certain information about the ground below. From a target vehicle driving down a highway to a flight path toward a distant airstrip, pilots can now extend their situational awareness further than the physical window of the plane.

Helmets and sensors provide a god’s eye viewof the battlefield

SOURCES – Youtube, Washington Post,, Breaking Defense