The presence of magnets in our everyday lives poses a significant threat to the precision of mechanical watch movements. At a press conference in Munich today, OMEGA presented the Seamaster Aqua Terra >15’000 gauss, the world’s first completely anti-magnetic watch.
The event, held in Munich’s renowned Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten in the prestigious Maximilianstrasse, was opened by OMEGA president Stephen Urquhart, who welcomed the German and Austrian journalists and introduced his fellow speakers Jean-Claude Monachon, OMEGA Vice President and Head of Product Development and Thierry Conus, Director of Research & Development at ETA.
OMEGA has long been known for its constant pursuit of even greater precision as demonstrated by the revolutionary Co-Axial calibres, its dominance in observatory accuracy trials and its achievements in sports timekeeping, including 25 Olympic Games. Accordingly, it was a logical step when Swatch Group CEO G. N. Hayek set the challenge for OMEGA to create a completely non-magnetic watch.
In his presentation, Stephen Urquhart explained how his brand met the challenge with the help of engineers, scientists and metallurgists from OMEGA’s sister companies in the Swatch Group.
What differentiates the Seamaster Aqua Terra > 15’000 Gauss from other watches previously designated as anti-magnetic is the fact that it does not use a protective inner case. Instead, the movement is equipped with non-ferrous components, allowing the timepiece to resist magnetic fields in excess of 15,000 gauss. Its predecessors were only resistant to exposure to fields of up to about a thousand gauss. Because there is no inner case, OMEGA has been able to create a watch with a date window and a transparent crystal case back that reveals the beautiful movement.
Following the presentation, Jean-Claude Monachon demonstrated the watch itself to keen journalists. In an entertaining display, he showed not only how the watch works, but also how easily ferrous metal objects can become magnetised, thus compromising the precision of a watch’s movement. Afterwards, the journalists had the possibility to pose questions to the three speakers, who answered with passion and expertise.
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