Exactly 60 years ago, on May 24, astronaut Scott Carpenter wore a Navitimer Cosmonaute on board of the Aurora 7 spacecraft. This milestone in history marked also a premiere in the world of horology: the legendary timepiece was the first Swiss wristwatch that went to space.
Honoring this anniversary, Breitling now launches a limited edition that stays true to the original while distinguished by its 24-hour dial, this detail meant to assist would-be astronauts differentiate day and night when orbiting the planet. In the vintage era, the Navitimer had already established itself as one of the favorite timepieces of professional pilots and had been awarded by the AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association) as its official timepiece, and so the association’s wing logo is also added to the modern watch’s face.
As a tribute to the date and the fact that the Aurora completed three orbits, the 2022 edition is limited to 362 pieces. The Navitimer B02 Chronograph 41 Cosmonaute Limited Edition retains the key elements such as the circular slide rule for performing mathematical calculations directly on the wrist, the wing logo and the three chronograph counters, not to forget the military-time indication.
While generally faithful, a closer look at the 41mm stainless steel watch reveals more novel features. Among them are the platinum bezel and the sapphire crystal caseback, which offers a glance onto the engravings on the bridges commemorating the event: “Carpenter,” “Aurora 7,” and “3 orbits around the Earth,” as well as the names of the seven astronauts selected for the crew of NASA’s first manned space flight.
Naturally, Breitling uses a modern movement, the B02 column-chronograph caliber with manual winding, C.O.S.C. chronometer certificate and 70 hours of power reserve. On the caseback, we can spot engravings of the date of the mission and the inscriptions “ONE OF 362” and “First Swiss wristwatch in space”.
The Breitling Navitimer B02 Chronograph 41 Cosmonaute Limited Edition is available for pre-order now. Retail is marked at $11,200 on a seven-link bracelet and $10,800 on a leather strap.
To learn more, visit Breitling, here.