University of Texas researches have created a form of "shape memory wire" that expands and contracts when cooled and heated. To make the muscles contract, they coat it in a catalyst that reacts to alcohol and begins to heat up. These muscles can be used in robots or in prosthetic limbs.
Misha Collins on What Made Supernatural Successful
Bender, it seems, wasn't so far-fetched after all.
Video [ScienceCentral via TheInquirer]