Omega Watches: The Call Of The Sea
For a watch company whose start came about in a country miles from the nearest coastline, Omega’s passion for the ocean is boundless. Over the years, Omega has played a significant role in ocean exploration and conservation.
Watches Made for Water
At OMEGA, designs are drawn from the deep, not plucked from thin air. The needs of professional divers drives their innovation. They consult first, BEFORE just diving in.
Water Resistance: Unidirectional 60min diving bezel makes it easy for a diver to measure elapsed time, while preventing them from accidentally rotating it the wrong way and miscalculating their dive time. A notable exception to this is the Ploprof, which has a bidirectional bezel but features a security pusher to lock it firmly in place.
Helium Valve: For a divers’ watch to remain water resistant at depth, it must survive crushing pressures. OMEGA tests divers’ watches in water at a minimum depth of 30 bar (300 m/1000 ft) depending on the model. For extra security, they then add 25% more pressure as set by international standards.
Unidirectional Rotating Bezel: When working at great depths, professional divers stay in a diving bell and breathe a mixture of gases containing a high proportion of Helium (He). The escape valve prevents He molecules, which expand during decompression, from popping the crystal face and caseback of the watch.
Luminescence: Underwater, it can go from daylight to dark in an instant, so the different hands on the watch must be clearly distinguishable and the display uncomplicated and easy-to-read. All OMEGA divers’ watches feature a luminescent dot on the bezel to mark the start-time of a dive.
Extendable Bracelet: A divers’ watch must fit tightly around the wrist, so it’s crucial that the bracelet extends to make extra room for the thickness of the diving suit.
Underwater Operation: A pusher needs to work perfectly at depth, without letting water into the watch. This technological challenge has been met head-on by OMEGA. All pushers on our divers’ chronographs are completely functional underwater.
Antimagnetic: Magnetic forces in electronic devices used on land, on deck and even under the sea, can throw a divers’ timepiece out of synch. What’s more, diving equipment often includes magnetic devices. So it is a force that must be resisted.
Shock & Scratch Resistance: Diving is filled with unforeseen hazards, especially when exploring caves, shipwrecks and reefs. OMEGA’s ‘NIVACHOC’ system protects the watch’s regulatory organ, so that it remains functional even if knocked against hard surfaces. Protecting the dial is the scratch-resistant sapphire crystal.
A Deep Commitment to Preservation
Omega’s connection to the sea has made them acutely aware of how fragile our oceans are and the damage we have done as a species. OMEGA’s partnership with GoodPlanet Foundation and its founder Yann Arthus-Bertrand led to the award-winning documentary film Planet Ocean. The Planet Ocean film presents outstanding aerial and underwater ocean views and shows how we can all help improve their health. 10 aerial cameramen and 13 underwater cameramen were sent all over the world to capture the beauty above and below the ocean’s surface for the documentary Planet Ocean. OMEGA organized a number of screenings around the world and with GoodPlanet Foundation, also made it available on YouTube. In Planet Ocean, Yann reveals the mysteries of the seas and sounds a warning about the urgent need to protect.
Now they have collaborated on “Time for the Planet”, two conservation projects in Indonesia. GoodPlanet Foundation and OMEGA have set up two projects for the restoration and conservation of the Indonesian coast. These three-year projects, carried out in collaboration with local conservation activists, are designed to maintain an outstanding natural heritage and preserve local economic activities. The projects have been implemented in the northern region of Sulawesi, which has one of the richest ecosystems on the planet. This ecosystem and its coral reefs are threatened by the overexploitation of resources.
Using a participative community approach, the project proposes to restore and preserve the damaged ecosystems in the region, advancing the understanding of the role mangrove forests and seagrass beds. The GoodPlanet Foundation and OMEGA are working with local communities and authorities to consolidate the protection of the shorelines and raise awareness of the issues among local players. The projects are using focused teaching resources to increase primary and secondary school students’ understanding of the fragile ecosystem and the importance of their local natural resources.
Honoring a Partnership, Supporting the Seas
The Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M GoodPlanet features a bold blue lacquered dial with applied indexes. The bright orange GMT scale on the bezel ring and central GMT hand make it possible to track two separate time zones, ideal for the frequent traveller who enjoys taking in the beauty of the oceans, lakes and rivers first-hand. The caseback, engraved with “GoodPlanet Foundation”, features a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, making it possible to see the exclusive OMEGA Co-Axial calibre 8605 within. This cutting-edge mechanical movement performs with such reliability and accuracy that the watch comes with a full four-year warranty.
A portion of the proceeds from this watch help fund projects to preserve the mangroves and seagrasses in Southeast Asia and educating the local population about conserving these important natural resources.