Omega’s Race to the Moon
“Man in his quest for knowledge and progress is determined and cannot be deterred. The exploration of space will go ahead… we choose to go to the moon this decade.”
These were the words of President John F. Kennedy, spoken in 1962 on a sweltering day at Rice University, in Houston, Texas. With this statement Kennedy helped to fire the starter gun for a Space Race between America and Russia, during which time both superpowers audaciously competed to send their astronauts to the moon. At this point, when Kennedy stood at the podium and declared their mission to touchdown on the moon, there was only one American who’d been into space and spent a meagre fifteen minutes and twenty-eight seconds outside our atmosphere. Seven years later, on July 20th, 1969, Apollo 11 descended slowly onto the moon, amidst a wreathing coil of grey dust.
This achievement was made possible by a series of ground-breaking technology breakthroughs, including the creation of a single watch, the Omega Speedmaster, which was specifically made to accompany to American astronauts into the ether. Over the course of half a century the Omega Speedmaster has accompanied these brave individuals as they test the limits of physical endurance and human courage. When Buzz Aldrin first planned his big, clunking moon-boots on the cratered moon he was wearing the Speedmaster Professional, which has been celebrated as a Moonwatch ever since. It was the first watch to be worn on the moon. Since that first manned lunar landing the Omega has been there for almost every one of NASA’s piloted missions. We’re talking about every venture that occurred, from the launch of the Gemini, which facilitated Apollo’s moon-bound trip, to the recent low Earth orbit of the International Space Station.
As a result the Omega Speedmaster is now regarded as one of the world’s most famous chronographs, securing a place in history, alongside all the other cutting-edge inventions that defined this era of on-going space exploration. It is designed to look like no other chronograph in circulation, with a black dial, bold indexes and hands coated in Super-LumiNova, as well as a sleek tachymeter scale. A cover of hesalite crystal protects the dial and various sub-dials, circled by a sturdy stainless steel case.
You can find out more about Omega’s famous Moonwatches here.