Navitimer Cosmonaute Limited Edition

Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute 2022- Re-issue Of The Newest Space Watch In Town

THM Desk
27 May 2022 |
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Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute 2022- Re-issue Of The Newest Space Watch In Town?

If only having a Moonwatch or a MoonSwatch wasn’t enough, we now have a new Space Watch! Haven’t you heard, that the fabled watch with the 24-hour dial is due to lift off once more on the 60th anniversary of the Navitimer, aboard the Aurora 7 spacecraft, in a special edition that pays tribute to the historic voyage. Breitling held the first public viewing of the original Cosmonaute in 1962 to commemorate the milestone and told the fascinating story behind the watch.

Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute
Historical navitimer cosmonaute from 1962 and the first swiss wristwatch in space worn by Scott Carpenter

Breitling's Navitimer was the definitive pilot's watch of the 1960s. However, the world's attention was swiftly shifting away from air travel and toward space exploration, signalling the start of a fresh kind of Space Race. This time, it's a race amongst watchmakers to be the first to put their creations on the wrists of astronauts.

Breitling Navitimer
Breitling advertisement (1964)

The Race To Space

Breitling's experience in aviation watches propelled the company to the forefront. After astronaut Scott Carpenter orbited the Earth three times while wearing the Navitimer Cosmonaute during his Mercury-Atlas 7 mission on May 24, 1962, Breitling officially claimed the distinction of "first Swiss wristwatch in space." Carpenter had requested the watch, which was a version on the legendary aviator's watch he'd seen during his flight days, but with a 24-hour dial to distinguish day from night in space.

Scott Carpenter dons the project mercury suit he will wear on his orbital flight

Breitling not only unveiled Carpenter's original Navitimer Cosmonaute on the 60th anniversary of that mission, but also launched a new tribute to it. The spacecraft's circumnavigations of the Earth and the year the mission made history, marking a key stride in manned spaceflight, are commemorated in this unique release, which is limited to 362 pieces.

Scott Carpenter
Scott Carpenter talks to the american president after his rescue (may 24-1962)                                                                                                        (photo credit-NASA)

A Piece Of Space History In A First-Time Public Viewing

The Aurora 7 space capsule, which had Carpenter aboard, splashed down safely in the Atlantic five hours after launch on May 24, 1962. Carpenter's Cosmonaute was irreparably damaged by the protracted exposure to seawater during the rescue effort, which lasted three hours. Carpenter's watch was quickly replaced by Breitling, but the scarred and corroded piece of space history remained unrestored and unknown in the Breitling family archives. Until now, that is.

Scott Carpenter Training
Astronaut Scott Carpenter goes through a water egress training session

That amazing space watch went on display for the first time in Zurich, exactly 60 years after its momentous voyage, to a limited group of collectors, journalists, and watch lovers.

Georges Kern and former NASA astronaut Scott Kelly co-hosted the event, which featured an extraordinary lineup of guest speakers, including members of the Carpenter family, Gregory Breitling, and historian and collector Fred Mandelbaum. The panellists discussed the creation of the Cosmonaute, the significance of Carpenter's mission, and how both fit into the larger context of the time.

Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute

The Navitimer B02 Chronograph 41 Cosmonaut Limited Edition, which was announced on May 24, 2022, has the same all-black dial, alligator strap, seven-row stainless-steel bracelet and 24-hour scale as the previous model, but the bezel is platinum adding a premium touch, and the caseback opens to reveal a modern chronograph movement, calibre B02.

Breitling Navitimer

The Cosmonaute is a real Navitimer, with all the trademarks of Breitling's aviation icon: the circular slide rule for conducting mathematical calculations, the "wings" logo of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, and a trio of chronograph subdials.

The inscriptions “Carpenter, Aurora 7”, "Mercury 7", and “3 orbits around the earth" are etched on the bridge. Carpenter's mission date, the watch's number 362, and the slogan "First Swiss wristwatch in space" are inscribed on the exterior caseback.

Breitling Navitimer Caseback

Carpenter was the sixth human to fly into space, and the Navitimer Cosmonaute was not the first watch in space. A Russian watch was the first to reach the stratosphere, according to Breitling historian Fred Mandelbaum, while US astronaut John Glenn, another member of the Mercury 7, had previously taken a pocket watch on a trip. The Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute, on the other hand, was the first Swiss timepiece to travel to space.

Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute
John Glenn left with Scott Carpenter prior to the flight.Scott wears his Breitling navitimer cosmonaute

Today's Cosmonaute transports us to the dawn of space exploration when the race was on, the stakes were great, and each mission was a triumph of human ingenuity. This new watch pays homage to the original's looks while adding modest improvements that work almost silently to improve it.

Price: Alligator strap: $10,800
Seven-row steel bracelet: $11,200