Bell & Ross Fans will definitely be adding this new time piece to their collections, as their announce the launch of the next chapter in their Flight Instrument Collection building off of last year’s BR03-92 Bi-Compass release straight from the Dashboard of a plane.
Its Instruments collection is directly inspired by the aeronautical essential navigation tools of aircraft cockpits, and highlights Bell & Ross’ four fundamental requirements: legibility, functionality, precision and water-resistance.
Fully in line with this collection, the new BR03-92 HUD gets inspiration from the avionics displays of fighter jets equipped with the most cutting-edge technologies.
FROM THE COCKPIT TO THE WRIST
In 2005, the BR 01 was inspired by the cockpit clocks of 1970s airplanes. This iconic watch was designed using high-tech materials and complications reflecting the finest watchmaking craftsmanship.
Pushing its expertise to explore aeronautical navigation instruments further, Bell & Ross develops and innovate year after year with a collection of exclusive watches. All of these models make up the instrument panel of an aircraft and offer both a completely new way of reading time and an uncompromising legibility – an absolute necessity for a professional use.
It all started in 2010 with the BR 01 RADAR, followed by other singular references like the BR01 TURN COORDINATOR or BR 01 HEADING INDICATOR. In 2020, as part of its continuing quest for innovation and performance, the watchmakers at Bell & Ross turned their attention on the Head Up Display.
This new introduction completes this Flight Instruments family.
H.U.D – HEAD UP DISPLAY
The Head Up Display – also known as HUD – is a transparent glass screen that displays all information that are essential to fulfill a mission, in the pilot’s visual field. For optimal effectiveness, its primary function is to keep the pilot focused on his target ahead without having to take the eyes off his line of sight.
Considered as both technological and safety equipment, the HUD takes on the augmented reality concept. With HUDs displaying digital data onto the windshield, pilots can be alerted about everything from the horizon line, altitude or speed to navigation aids such as the flight path vector – indicating the direction the jet is taking.
As a result, this high-performance tool puts the emphasis on legibility and will guide the way day and night. In case of low visibility for instance or no matter the conditions, the screen will adjust in brightness and contrast to optimize the ambient lighting.
Although it was originally used in the military field since the 1950’s, the HUD is now also frequently exploited in civil aviation and automobile industry.
The military world has always been a pioneer in numerous fields. It has created an unquestionable expertise in the field of avant-garde technology and its innovations have had various applications in civilian life, such as the Internet, GPS or even the first business jet aircrafts.
AN AVANT-GARDE INSTRUMENT, A UNIQUE WATCH
The design of the BR03-92 HUD embodies the spirit of Bell & Ross’ instrument watches. With a contemporary style, the black matte ceramic case features the iconic “circle in a square” that refers to the silhouette of an aircraft cockpit clock.
Settling Bell & Ross’ instrumental identity, the design approach of the HUD’s display hides a treasure chest of sophistication. Using technical and graphical tools and tips to translate this display type at the tiny scale of an analog mechanical watch was an innovative exercise at the brand’s creative studio.
An Innovative Display: Analogical yet Mechanical
Arranged in tiers, the BR03-92 HUD is built around superimposed levels. This technical construction was thought and conceived by the designers to create a depth (perspective) that echoes the real HUD instrument.
Thus, the concept of Augmented Reality adapted to a timepiece hinges on 3 layers:
The Sapphire Glas
- On the upper level, the green-tinted sapphire crystal glass gives the illusion of the digital HUD-type display, using the surface of the disc dial and that of the glass.
- 4 brackets are printed on the verso of the glass as a reminiscent to the 4 corners of the HUD line of sight
- On the middle level, the black and green hands reveal the minutes and seconds.
- The hands’ center parts were purposely hidden to further increase the digit analogy and the legibility principles of professional aeronautical instruments.
The Hour Disc and The Dial
- On the lower level, the hours are indicated by a green triangle marker which appears in the center through an independent concentric disc which is not graduated.
- This ultra-light disc was developed to ensure that neither accuracy nor power of the watch were reduced. Furthermore, the disc needs to be sufficiently resistant so as to not become deformed or risk any friction.
Words by Arrnott Olssen