A piece of the Universe’s history on your wrist

The Formex Space Rock Essence

Is a 4.5-billion-year-old object on your wrist?

Among the objects that surround us, meteorites are among those that can have this age. Visitors from another world, they allow us to learn more about our history and fascinate our eyes when they dress our dials.

After the ceramic bezel, the carbon case, the patented fine-adjustment and case suspension systems, Formex strikes again with its limited-edition Essence Space Rock.

Is the name Muonionalusta familiar to you?

The Muonionalusta meteorite is an iron meteorite found in Sweden in 1906. It is considered one of the oldest known iron meteorites, with an estimated age of 4.5 billion years.

The Muonionalusta meteorite is a primitive metallic meteorite, that is, formed from materials that existed in the early solar system. It is composed mainly of iron and nickel, with traces of carbon, phosphorus and other elements. It also contains silicate inclusions, which are rock grains present in the meteorite.

The Muonionalusta meteorite is known for its distinctive appearance, with crystal-like structures, which crystallized during its formation.

True to its desire to get off the beaten track, the Swiss brand is now offering a limited edition of 176 pieces.

88 are available with a 39mm steel case and the other 88 are available with a 41mm carbon fiber case and a ceramic bezel. Two versions with similar looks that Raphaël Granito presented to us.

From the production stages to the project’s motivations, he tells you everything.

Formex Essence Leggera FortyOne Space Rock
Formex Essence ThirtyNine Space Rock

Let’s start with the most visible: the dial. What are the manufacturing steps to obtain such dials?

The general steps are not completely different from those followed for “classic” dials. The meteorite is first drilled to remove a cylinder which will then be cut into strips.

These flakes are then passed to the lapidary. This step allows to obtain the most regular surface possible.

The particularity of the Muonionalusta meteorite lies in its composition. The iron which composes it rusts in contact with the air. To avoid this, all the dials have gone through a process of electrophoresis. This technique, in addition to avoiding rust, can also be used to study the chemical composition of the meteorite and learn more about its formation and history. It can also be used to identify organic molecules possibly present in the meteorite, which can be interesting to study the possibility of life on other planets or in space.

After that the strips are placed on brass plates and the holes for the markers are made.

What did you like about this project?

I enjoyed the whole project! From its conception to its realization, I had the chance to enjoy each step. This is one of the opportunities that a company like Formex provides. I was able to admire this meteorite, to appreciate it up close and I was able to see it dressed up our watches.

Playing with such a material is so unique that it pushes us to be better. We had to adapt to the object to get the most out of it. One example is the date opening at 6 o’clock. On the other models in the Essence collection, you will notice that there is a bevel on the dial, while here the cutout is straight.

Formex Essence SPACE ROCK

No two dials are alike, which makes each watch unique. Unique by its dial design, but also by the history of the meteorite. I have on my wrist an object that is 4.5 billion years old !  That’s something.

And finally, I will say that the Widmanstätten (or Widmanstaetten) figures, or Thomson’s structures hypnotize me. This addition of elements makes me like this kind of project. It is quite possible that others of this type will be created, but I can’t tell you anything at the moment…

I was also pleasantly surprised because I am not the only one who appreciated this project: the limited edition was sold out in only a few days, which is very encouraging for the future.

The Muonionalusta meteorite is not the only one available on Earth and you enjoyed this project. Is it something you would like to do again?

I love working with these stones and natural materials. There will certainly be more projects like this coming up.

I intend to keep it a surprise, but anything is possible!

Once again Formex hits hard with this limited edition. The brand reinforces its position as an outsider for our greatest pleasure.

At Tourbillon Watch, we can only support such an initiative. The watches have been created with passion and they look great on the wrist, as well as being comfortable.

Well done Formex!

Technical specification FORMEX