High-tech materials image

High-tech materials

Research & Development has been at the heart of Girard-Perregaux’s creations from inception. The works of our R&D department allow us to present extremely innovative concepts like the very first high frequency calibre in the 1960s, the Gyromatic HF, beating at 36’000 vibrations per hour (5 Hz), awarded by the Neuchâtel Observatory for its exceptional performance. But the quest for excellence doesn’t end at the concept stage. It is sublimated by execution, showcasing high-tech materials with both aesthetical and functional qualities. All our collections are the fruit of a balance struck between tradition and cutting-edge technology.

Many advantages

Silicon

 

Silicon’s benefits are multiple: it is neither susceptible to corrosion nor affected by changing temperature, is lightweight and impervious to magnetic fields. In addition, silicon’s low friction coefficient mitigates both wear and energy consumption. In 2013, we created an ingenious silicon blade for our award-winning Constant Escapement L.M. The action of the silicon blade flexing backward and forward delivered a uniform supply of energy to the escapement, thus enhancing precision. More recently, we launched the Free Bridge in 2020, capitalising on silicon’s ability to be formed into intricate shapes, using this state-of-the-art material to create not only the escapement but also a large variable inertia balance. The benefit of this approach is that the balance is more stable and less vulnerable to shock. Its aerial design as well as its large diameter further augment precision.

Hardness

Sapphire

 

Rated 9 out of 10 on Mohs scale of mineral hardness, sapphire is extremely hard to craft. At nearly 3,000 degrees Kelvin, fundamental particles merge under the effect of an incandescent flow of oxygen and dihydrogen. A raw block of sapphire crystal emerges from this process, which is then cut, machined, drilled, domed and polished using tools made from the hardest material in the universe: diamond. Sapphire’s crystalline transparency make it the perfect material to craft a case that would reveal all the intricacies of our mechanics, like on the Quasar and Laureato Absolute Light models. Did you know that 200 hours of painstaking work are required in order to machine and polish the case of a Quasar Tourbillon with Three Bridges?

Worldwide first

Carbon Glass

 

A worldwide first upon its introduction at SIHH 2019, Carbon Glass is a mix of carbon fibre and fiberglass compressed at high temperatures. Lightweight, 100 times more ductile than, the material has the added benefit of being 100% water-resistant. The raw aspect of its surface provides it with an audacious look, making it the perfect ally for our Laureato Absolute collection. In addition, the possibility to colour the fiberglass allowed for an assortment of grey, black or blue models, namely the Laureato Absolute Rock, Laureato Absolute Crystal Rock, Laureato Absolute Wired.