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Accurate to 1/1000th of a second,the mikrometer Flying 1000 Concept Chronograph makes TAG Heuer an unrivalled master of ultra-high frequency in mechanical watchmaking…
It may be the length of a finger but the difference can mean the position between second place and World Championship. And that’s where TAG Heuer Mikrometer Flying 1000 Concept Chronograph comes to play. The world’s first-ever mechanical chronograph to measure and display the 1/1,000th of a second – making it 125 times more accurate than most existing mechanical chronographs – thanks to a heart beating at the unbelievable speed of 3,600,000 beats-per-hour!
A complete digital watch, the TAG Heuer Mikrotimer Flying 1000 Concept Chronograph is the only mechanical timepiece that can precisely gauge a phenomenon like sprinter Usain Bolt running way ahead by 1.2 centimetres while establishing his new 100 m world record of 9.58 seconds or a cheetah which at top speed travels 3 centimetres. TAG Heuer’s newest, fastest, most revolutionary timepiece creation to date, its measuring and mesmerising powers are unprecedented. More than ever, it makes TAG Heuer the unrivalled master of high and ultra-high frequencies in mechanical watchmaking. In recent years, TAG Heuer watchmasters and engineers have taken on a bold challenge: to completely rethink the way a mechanical watch generates, stores, transmits and regulates energy and displays time. Both the TAG Heuer Calibre 360 launched in 2005 and The Heuer Carrera Mikrograph 1/100th Second Chronograph launched in January 2011 are equipped with 50Hz oscillators – ten times faster than the fastest conventional ones. They are to this day the first and the only ones to have been commercialised since late 2005 for the former and mid 2011 for the later.
The Mikrotimer Flying 1000 Concept Chronograph pushes the concept even further, beyond what anyone dreamt possible — and past what everyone said was impossible. Using complex differential kinematics, TAG Heuer watchmasters and engineers have designed an ultra-highfrequency 500Hz spring oscillating system that vibrates a phenomenal 3,600,000 beats per hour, 125 times faster than most existing mechanical chronographs ever created and 10 times quicker than the former world-record holders TAG Heuer Calibre 360 and Heuer Carrera Mikrograph 1/100th Second Chronograph
The 100% TAG Heuer-built Mikrotimer Flying 1000 Concept Chronograph capitalises on the construction of the integrated Heuer Caerrra Mikrograph 1/100th Second Chronograph and is equipped with two escapements with Regular time: 4Hz, 28,800 beats per hour, 42- hour power reserve and Ultra fast time: 500 Hz, 3,600,000 beats per hour.
It relies on an unprecedented 11 patents pending, including remarkable innovations like no balance wheel system, the mechanical regulating body being conceptually based on existing spirals but with an optimised rigidity and a reduced length and a dynamic lever/wheel transmission which generates a hyper-velocity impulse and uses a Launcher-Hub-Brake system controlled by a column wheel and made possible because of the increased rigidity of the spiral.
Since 1969, the year TAG Heuer launched the world’s first automatic chronograph movement, coupling watch movement with chronograph function has become standard operation procedure. There is a serious ‘hitch’, however, with this isochronous system: its wheel chain gear system increases energy loss. This is one of the greatest quandaries of chronograph design — how to keep chronograph operation from disrupting watch operation.
Then came the TAG Heuer Calibre 360 in March 2005 and the TAG Heuer Mikrograph 1/100th of a second Chronograph in January 2011, which combined two independent kinematic chains — one for the watch and one for the chronograph — in an integrated movement for the Heuer Carrera Mikrograph 1/100th Second Chronograph, thereby eliminating the need for a clutch. The system displays 1/100ths of a second on the central hand and beats at a very high frequency of 360,000 vibrations per hour. Separating the watch chain from the chronograph chain eliminates the risks of the chronograph influencing the watch and viceversa; but most importantly, it reduces energy loss and optimises the precision of the chronograph’s regulating organ. It allows the Heuer Carrera Mikrogrph 1/100th Second Chronograph to be COSC across the board — i.e. with the chronograph function running, a feat virtually impossible to achieve by conventional mono-frequency chronographs.
Creating a mechanical chronograph that measures 1/1,000th of a second requires serious engineering. Making it easy to read — 10ths, 100ths, 1,000ths and minutes at a glance — requires even more. The flying central hand of the Mikrotimer Flying 1000 makes an astounding 10 rotations per second, indicating 1/1000th of a second and 1/100th of a second on a scale on the external part of the dial, which has 100 graduations over 360°. A second, smaller central hand indicates minutes (TAG Heuer patent pending) and 1/12th of a minute on a 150-second scale. A counter at 6 o’clock displays 1/10th of a second, calibrated to 5 seconds.
This unique dial-scale display system allows direct, instantaneous reading of minutes, seconds and 1/1,000th, making this the only mechanical chronograph for sporting events like the Formula 1, where 1,000-of-a-second accuracy is essential. Above and beyond everything, it is one of the most stunning ‘Grande Complication’ ever developed in mechanical watchmaking. Stunningly beautiful, with its black Titanium Carbide coated case with titanium horns and the black ruthenium-treated movement inside, the Mikrotimer Flying 1000 is still in the Concept Stage. As was the case of the Monaco V4, further development will be needed to ensure the same over-time reliability and precision that have characterised every TAG Heuer masterpiece commercialised over 151 years.
The case of the TAG Heuer Microtimer is a solid stainless steel square with an ‘H’ shape. The case curves towards the watch strap where a rubber band is compactly fitted into the slightly protruding legs of the H shape. The dial itself is rectangular in shape, fixed inside the square receptacle. This timepiece comes in this one basic design, except for a variation of a plain watch and one with diamonds on it. All the watches in the TAG Heuer Microtimer collection have a water resistance of 300 feet, an alarm and a scratch proof sapphire crystal window. They have a sleek, simple yet fashionable look, a design that would appeal to many.