Ball Watch Company has paid tribute to its long term partnership with space pilot Brian Binnie with the new Engineer Hydrocarbon Spacemaster Orbital II.
Brian Binnie was one of the first civil astronauts to enter space at an altitude of more than 62 miles on board a private spacecraft, as pilot of Virgin Galatic's 'SpaceShipOne'.
Inspired by the challenges Binnie faced maintaining control of SpaceShipOne when entering space and returning to atmosphere, the Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon Spacemaster Orbital II is equipped with its patented Amortiser device. The unique anti-shock system protects the automatic calibre RR1404 against damage from external shocks, such as those experienced by Binnie when igniting the SpaceShipOne rockets.
The Amortiser has a protective ring that absorbs the energy created by side shocks, and has anti-magnetic properties to protect the movement from magnetic fields. A switch on the case back in the style of an aircraft propeller enables the rotor to be locked during activities that may cause shocks.
The Engineer Hydrocarbon Spacemaster Orbital II has a 45 mm titanium case and a bidirectional rotating bezel, with the four cardinal points of a compass indicated by stamped markers. This enables the watch to be used as a compass together with the direction of the sun.
Functions include a chronograph with accumulated measurement up to 12 hours, GMT hand, subsidiary seconds, and a magnified date display.
The timepiece has an anti-reflective sapphire crystal and a black dial. The Arabic numerals and push buttons of the chronograph are fitted with micro tubes of 3H gas to enable the wearer to use the watch in total darkness, without the use of any external light or energy source. This technology is up to 100 times more effective than conventional luminescent paints.