The latest special edition Lo Scienziato Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT from Panerai is quite special. This is due to the way the case is constructed. Introducing the Panerai PAM 578 Lo Scienziato Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT Titanio for SIHH 2016, limited to only 150 examples.
UPDATE: Full review now online here.
You may be wondering what makes this titanium cased watch different? Panerai have made titanium cases before but not in this way. The Luminor 1950 case of the new Special Edition has
the classic diameter of 47 mm and it is made of titanium, which is 40% lighter than steel. To reduce the weight further, the case is made using an innovative technology which enables it to be hollowed out internally, forming an extremely complex geometrical cavity without in any way compromising its water-resistance (10 bar, equivalent to a depth of about 100 metres), its solidity or its resistance to any tension or torsion to which the case may be subjected.
The technology used is called Direct Metal Laser Sintering: this process builds up a 3D object layer by layer by means of a fibre optic laser using powdered titanium. The successive layers – each one only 0.02 mm thick – merge together and become completely solid, creating forms which would be impossible to achieve using traditional working methods, lower in weight and with a perfectly uniform, even appearance.
On the main dial the watch shows, the hours and minutes in a local timezone, in addition to a 2nd timezone indicator which is linked to an am/pm indicator at the 3 o’clock position. At the 9 o’clock position is the running seconds. Inside of the running seconds subidal there is a dot indicator which shows the rotation of the tourbillon, which makes a full rotation every 30 seconds. The watch has a power reserve of 6 days.
The P.2005 mechanical movement, the hand-wound calibre with tourbillon patented by Panerai, appears here for the first time in the P.2005/T version, skeletonised and with titanium bridges and plates. Thanks to the lower density of this material – about half that of the brass of which these components are normally made – the overall weight of the movement is 35% less than that of the P.2005/S skeletonised version. Located on the back side of the movement is the power reserve indicator.
To keep the weight down, even the deployant buckle for the alligator strap has been skeletonised.
We like the use of the 3D printing to create a case that is lighter and would like to see Panerai continue to explore this method for other metals.
The Panerai PAM 578 Lo Scienziato Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT Titanio will retail for US$143,000.
For more information please visit Panerai
MOVEMENT: Skeleton hand-wound mechanical, P.2005/T calibre, executed entirely by Panerai. FUNCTIONS: Hours,
minutes, small seconds, second time zone, 24h indicator, power reserve indicator on the back, tourbillon. CASE: 47 mm,
brushed titanium. POWER RESERVE: 144H. WATER-RESISTANCE: 10 bar (~100 metres).