We’ll cut to the chase. This article is about something that weighs only 40 grams. It also costs a million dollars.
You’re okay with the ‘It costs a million dollars’ part, but you must have thought that it must have been either a super car or luxury interiors. You might want to say ‘watch’, but these million dollar time pieces pack a lot of weight, don’t they?
One word- Graphene. An exceptionally light and strong substance invented by scientists at the University of Manchester who won the Nobel Prize for their troubles.
This is what made possible the legendary collaboration between geeks & studs. The collaboration that excites the science nerd within you & the adrenaline junkie- University of Manchester, Richard Mille & McLaren F1
Unveiled recently at the Salon International De La Haute Horlogerie, the RM 50-03 has claimed the title of the lightest mechanical watch in the world at 40 grams.
Graphene is the first 2D material in the world coming in at the thickness of just one atom! Isolated first in 2004 by researchers at the University of Manchester, it has been pegged as the material that’s looking to revolutionize the world of technology.
What’s more? The inspiration for the RM 50-03 was derived from the wishbone shaped suspension structure of the McLaren F1.
Here are some of the features of this bad boy-
A chronographic perfection brought to life: it combines a tourbillon escapement with a split second’s function. In order to perform without fail, the combination of these two complications within a single mechanism demands perfect transfers of energy.
Three part case
Highly resistant. Extremely light, preserving perfect ergonomics and a unique, striking appearance.
The bezel and case back feature Graph TPT, a TPT Carbon whose physical properties have been considerably improved by the injection of Graphene, a revolutionary nanomaterial six times lighter than steel but 200 times more resistant.
Torque limiting crown
This added security system prevents accidental over winding of the watch, which could result in damage such as snapping the winding stem or putting too much pressure on the barrel spring.
7 gram mechanism
The secret to its feather weight lies in the use of grade 5 titanium and TPT Carbon for the baseplate and bridges and in the extreme skeletonisation of its components.
The transverse cage crafted of TPT Carbon and inspired by the wishbone suspension structure of a McLaren-Honda Formula 1 car, supports the entire caliber.
Thanks to Richard Mille’s partnership with BIWI SA, a Swiss company specialised in very-high-precision moulding of vulcanised elastomers, Graphene was injected into the rubber strap of the RM 50-03 in order to improve its rubber-like behaviour and thus its resistance to wear.