New Chronomètre à Résonance part 2

New Chronomètre à Résonance by F.P Journe

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Published by 3809 on October 20th, 2010 at 05:56 p.m..

In 2004, F.P.Journe introduced a second version for the Chronomètre à Résonance with the introduction of the first movement ever made in 18K rose gold, a specification that would from then on apply to all the precision chronometers of the brand. 2010 – F.P.Journe offers a new face to the renowned Chronomètre a Résonance, acclaimed by collectors and professionals of the brand worldwide.

In an ultimate quest for precision, the dial at 9h now offers a time indication of 24 hours, defining precisely the hours of day and those of night. The dial at 3h in silver guilloche indicates the local time but can also be used for the same time zone. Hardly a small modification for the subtle 18K rose gold mechanism with its two perfectly synchronised beating mechanical hearts that are revealed through a sapphire crystal case-back: there is now a different gear transmission making the hands turn in 24 hours instead of 12 hours.

The new Chronomètre a Résonance will be, as its predecessor was, available in two versions: one with a platinum case and white gold dial and the other all in red gold. The two dials in silver guilloche indicating the hours, minutes and seconds are secured on the 18K gold dial by polished steel rings, a patent by F.P.Journe. The New Chronomètre a Résonance is imbued with a profoundly poetic depth, and remains, 10 years later, the most precise mechanical watch of contemporary watch making.

What is actually the resonance phenomenon?

Two frequencies which harmonise! Any animate body transmits a vibration to its environment. When another body picks up this vibration, it absorbs its energy and begins to vibrate at the same frequency. The first is called the “exciter” and the second the “resonator”. This physical phenomenon known as “resonance” is an integral part of our daily life and yet we hardly even notice it.

When we are looking for a program on the radio, it crackles until the chosen wavelengths meet those of the transmitter: only then do they harmonise to begin resonating together!

Resonance concerns all fields including those related to mechanical engineering, music and human beings, as confirmed by musician Keith Jarrett in our first catalogue: “This is particularly obvious in music, since lutes and sitars, for example, have strings whose only reason for existence is to vibrate by resonance; the musician never touches them, despite their proximity to the strings that are plucked.”

Research on resonance Two centuries later, François-Paul Journe took up the challenge with a first creation in the form of a pocket-watch, which did not yet perform according to his expectations. It would take fifteen more years of work for the watchmaker to gain the maturity and the experience to meet the demands of actual wear on the wrist and provide chronometric performance driven to extremes to present as a world premiere, the very first resonance wristwatch, pushing the limits of chronometry to its extremes. Each of the two balances alternately serves as exciter and resonator.

When the two balances are in motion, they enter into sympathy due to the effect of resonance and begin naturally beating in opposition. The two balances thus rest against each other, giving more inertia to their movement. Nonetheless, this harmony is possible only if the difference in frequency between them does not exceed five seconds per day of cumulated difference in six situations. Adjusting them is an extremely delicate task.

Whereas an external disturbing movement affects the running of a traditional mechanical watch, this same disturbance, in the case of a resonance watches, produces an effect that accelerates one of the balances as much as it slows the other down.

Little by little, the two balances come back towards each other to find their point of harmony, thus eliminating the disturbance. This innovative chronometer offers a level of precision that is unequalled in the field of the mechanical watch.

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