Will Artificial Muscle Make You Stronger?

The world’s first human-robot arm-wrestling match shows off the potential of a new material that someday could power machines—and even human limbs and organs

Inhuman Strength

Who acted as the event’s boisterous emcee. Facing page: Panna Felsen, in safety goggles, weighs in against the acid-propelled arm of Virginia Tech undergrads Noah Papas, Stephen Ros and Steve Deso

Inhuman Strength

The arm-wrestling match grew from a challenge issued six years ago by NASA physicist Yoseph Bar-Cohen

The Long View

Winning would be nice, but the robots are proof-of-concept tests. Mohsen Shahinpoor has a heart pump in the works.

by Timothy Archibald

Among the rules: robot arms shouldn’t “perform any irritating acts,” such as flashing blinding lights.