Humanoid Robots Are Made At Engineered Arts Robotics Factory

Almost Human: Making a Realistic Robot

Inside a robotics company.

Meet Fred. With a touch of grey in his hair and a world-weary look, Fred seems like any middle-aged man with a fondness for plaid coats and turtleneck sweaters. But he's not. He's a robot — an incredibly lifelike robot — built at Engineered Arts, in Cornwall, England. The company makes several lines of robots for entertainment (as at theme parks) and communication (as at info kiosks). Fred is one of its most detailed, humanoid creations; Engineered Arts calls them Mesmer robots. Below, photos and video of the making of a Mesmer robot.

SAY CHEESE Matt Cardy/Getty Images SAY CHEESE A Mesmer robot-in-progress has its picture taken, while another Engineered Arts robot looks on. TWO-FACED Matt Cardy/Getty Images TWO-FACED Faces in various stages of creation. UNDER THE HOOD Matt Cardy/Getty Images UNDER THE HOOD An Engineered Arts prosthetics expert examines the back of Fred's head. A CLOSER LOOK Matt Cardy/Getty Images A CLOSER LOOK Mesmer robots can be fictional characters, or they can be based on real people. Engineered Arts has worked with Madame Tussaud's to make robots for its London, New York, and Shanghai locations. SPARE PARTS Matt Cardy/Getty Images SPARE PARTS LEG DAY Matt Cardy/Getty Images LEG DAY A pair of robot legs receives attention; later, they may get character-appropriate clothing. QUICK TRIM Matt Cardy/Getty Images QUICK TRIM MOVING Blinking, yawning, and chatting away.