The Orion module has just returned to Earth, after having grazed the Moon and its far side.
After a long postponed launch, the first phase of the Artemis mission will have been a success.
Finally, man will once again be able to set foot on the Moon, with Mars in his sights... And an Omega Speedmaster on his wrist!
The last manned trip to the Moon was already half a century ago: Led by Commander Eugene Cernan, Lunar Module Pilot Harrison Schmitt and Command Module Pilot Ronald Evans, the Apollo 17 spacecraft landed on the Moon on December 11, 1972 at 19:54.58 GMT.
Focused on science, this mission had made it possible to explore our lunar neighbor like never before.
Eugene Cernan just before Apollo 17 liftoff. NASA
On the occasion of this anniversary, Omega looks back on the exploits of Apollo 17, as well as the role played by the Speedmaster Moonwatch during the long hours of exploration of this mission.
"Apollo 17 astronauts stayed on the surface of the Moon for about 75 hours,"
said Raynald Aeschlimann, president and CEO of Omega.
All these years later, Omega still fondly remembers their exploits.
It was the sixth time in history that our Speedmaster had been flown to the Moon, and it marked the final milestone in an incredible lunar story.”
This is undoubtedly the mission during which the watches of the Swiss brand remained exposed to the vacuum of space for the longest time, on the surface of the Moon as in space.
The last of the real Moonwatches, these watches to have known the surface of the Moon.
To date, the Speedmaster Moonwatch has been worn by astronauts on every moon landing in history.
After being qualified by NASA for
"all manned space missions"
in 1965, the watch became part of the official equipment of all successful Apollo voyages, from Apollo 11 in 1969 to Apollo 17 in 1972. Until to the end of his life, Gene Cernan remained a close friend of the brand.
In addition to attending numerous House events and celebrations over the decades, he has always spoken highly of the Speedmaster that accompanied him throughout his career at NASA.
As he said,
“The commitment at Omega is not only to make the best timepiece in the world, but in the universe.
Today, Gene Cernan's Apollo 17 watch (reference ST 105.003) can be admired in the new Omega museum in Bienne.
Worn by the last man to walk on the Moon, it was also recently used to recreate the legendary Caliber 321. Thanks to
technology , the team in charge was able to immerse themselves inside this historic timepiece in order to obtain the exact specifications for the reconstruction of the movement.