On July 20, 1969, all of America, with bated breath, watched as Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin took their first steps on the lunar surface. One of the astronauts wore an Omega Speedmaster Professional over the spacesuit. Omega movements became part of NASA's space programwas widely known, but few knew that the Speedmaster itself was originally designed for racing cars. Meanwhile, this is exactly what the name of the watch, which appeared in the distant 1957, says. The Speedmaster was the first wrist chronograph in the world to feature a tachymeter scale on the bezel rather than the dial, allowing the rider to easily track lap times. In addition, the robust design of the housing allowed it to withstand significant vibration and shock without losing measurement accuracy. Just a few years later, these qualities helped the Speedmaster pass all NASA tests and become part of the cosmonaut's outfit - since 1965 they have been worn by all Apollo astronauts. While Omega The Speedmaster went into space before "official" permission: October 3, 1962 - on the wrist of Walter Schirr and May 15, 1963 - on the arm of Gordon Cooper.
© press service Omega
Actually, the search for a watch for the official outfit of astronauts NASA began in September 1964. A whole list of requirements (wrist model, high readability of the dial, durable steel case, anti-magnetic properties, resistance to electromagnetic fields) was sent to American watch companies and representatives of Swiss brands. In response, four models were received for testing: the Hamilton pocket chronograph (rejected outright), and Rolex, Longines and Omega watches.from brand representatives in America. The tests were conducted by engineer Jim Ragan. It was necessary to simulate vacuum, vibration, huge temperature drops and other characteristics of outer space. As a result, only Omega Speedmaster watches got a ticket to space. Unsurprisingly, they were the ones who saved the lives of three astronauts of the infamous Apollo-13: on April 14, 1970, after an explosion of oxygen tanks, crew commander Jim Lowell was forced to operate the ship manually, entrusting the functions of the on-board computer to the Speedmaster. For 60 years now, "speedmasters" have tirelessly proved that it is no coincidence that they have bypassed their competitors.
1 of 14 Omega Speedmaster Broad Arrow, 1957 © Omega Press Service
Omega Speedmaster "First Omega in Space", 1959
Omega The Speedmaster Moonwatch Caliber 1861, 1968
Omega Speedmaster Mark II, 1969
Omega Speedmaster Speedsonic, 1973
Omega Speedmaster The Golden Panda, 1997
Omega Speedmaster Dark side of the Moon, 2014
Omega Speedmaster Automatic, 2017
For the anniversary year, Omega has replicated the original 1957 models. Then a whole trio of technical watches was born - the Speedmaster, Railmaster and Seamaster 300. Today the “holy trinity” (as they are called in the company) is released in the form of 557 collectible sets in a special oak case with spare straps and a tool for adjusting them. In addition, each of the historic models has been reissued separately in 3557 60th Anniversary Limited Edition pieces. To faithfully reproduce the original from 60 years ago, the designers used digital scanning technology for the dial and case for the first time.>