Today we’re taking a close up look at the RM 021 “Aerodyne” by Richard Mille. This timepiece is the first watch created with a composite baseplate utilizing a titanium exterior framework in combination with honeycombed orthorhombic titanium alumide and carbon nanofiber.
Originally developed by NASA for use on supersonic aircraft wings, orthorhombic titanium aluminides are new group of alloys which create an unparalleled stiffness and can withstand extremely high temperatures and torsion. The material is used in conjunction with titanium for the CALIBER RM 022 movement baseplate.
This manual winding tourbillon movement boasts a 70 hour power reserve, which is indicated on the power reserve barrel located between 11 and 12 o’clock. The dial also boasts hours, minutes, torque indicator and function selector.
Housed in a 48.18mm x 39.70mm (widest point) x 13.95 mm (thickest area) case, the torque indicator provides a visualisation of the mainspring’s internal tension via a numeric scale located between 12 and 1 o’clock. Below 53 dNmm, the spring is too slack; above 65 dNmm, excessive tension can adversely affect the running of the movement and may even cause damage.
Meanwhile, a push-button at the center of the crown allows the wearer to select the winding, neutral and hand setting functions with a simple push. A hand at 4 o’clock displays the selected function.
Photos courtesy Richard Mille.