Jeanne explains, "Rasmussen began working with PPPL in 2007, four years after she started Ras Labs and nine years after receiving her first patent for a synthetic muscle. The muscle is made from a gel-like material called an electroactive polymer that can potentially mimic human movement by expanding and contracting. That ability would make it very useful in robotics and in developing better prosthetic limbs."
"We can't explore space without robots," Rasmussen said. "Humans can only withstand a certain amount of radiation so that limits the time that people can be in space, whereas robots, particularly if they're radiation-resistant, can be up there for long periods of time without being replaced."
Lew Meixler, the long-time head of Technology Transfer at PPPL who retired in March, said he has enjoyed helping Rasmussen follow her quest. "That's what entrepreneurs are," he said. "They're the dreamers who devote all their time, energy and resources to follow their dreams."
For the full story: http://www.princeton.edu/research/news/features/a/?id=14808