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Bovet 1822 - Récital 20 Astérium

With the new Récital 20 Astérium model, the high-end watch manufacture Bovet 1822 invites watch enthusiasts to explore the sky and constellations as they are visible from the Earth by mapping them out on a dome of translucent blue quartz.


To create a dazzling sky, the constellations are laser-engraved and then coated with Super-LumiNova. And to ensure utmost realism, the highest stars are depicted at the top of the dome while the lowest stars nearer the horizon appear on the periphery of the display aperture.


To make things even more remarkable, Bovet 1822 opted to implement a sidereal calendar. The duration of a complete Earthly orbit (known as a sidereal year) is 365 days, 6 hours, 9 minutes and 9.77 seconds, or an unchanging 365.25 days. For obvious reasons, the Gregorian calendar was obliged to round down the number of days in a year to 365 and to compensate for the remaining hours by adding an extra day every four years, giving us our leap years.

The calendars usually employed in watchmaking – perpetual or otherwise – are all based on the Gregorian calendar, and the use of such a mechanism to drive a night sky results in a cumulative error when displaying the time.

The night sky and the collection of sidereal indications on the Astérium are thus governed by an annual calendar calculated on a 365.25-day cycle to reflect the real duration of one full terrestrial orbit.

Despite its complexity, the mechanism of the watch was designed to be pretty intuitive. Graduations are linked to the astronomic indications through which a single central hand travels. This hand is driven directly by the annual calendar, and therefore performs a complete rotation once every 365.25 days.

An annual calendar (dates and months) is graduated on the case-back bezel and serves to precisely regulate the night sky.


Pulling the crown out disconnects the hours and minutes hands, and enables both the position of the night sky and the annual calendar to be adjusted quickly. To do this, the wearer simply moves the central hand forward until it reflects the correct date before adjusting the time with the crown in its middle position. This operation takes far less time than adjusting a perpetual calendar would, and does not require a corrector.

The same hand also travels along a graduation indicating the signs of the zodiac, symbolized by the constellations in front of which the sun appears throughout the year – hence the delicately hand-engraved sun that is riveted to the part of the hand that passes over this section. The seasons are also indicated further inside the timepiece, as are the solstices and equinoxes.


Returning to the front of the timepiece we find two double hemispheric indicators: on the left the moon phase and the equation of time - the difference between apparent time (solar time) and conventional time (mean time) which varies between 15 minutes ahead or behind, depending on the time of year - and on the right the 10-day power reserve and the retrograde minutes.


In accordance with astral time, the hours pass concentrically across the night sky on a 24-hour dial that is positioned beneath the night sky and visible through the transparent quartz.


To ensure optimal legibility, the hours hand has been designed to execute three functions simultaneously: it indicates the time, points to the north to facilitate map-reading, and carries the elliptical window characteristic of the night sky.

Finally, the seconds hand is driven by the patented double face flying tourbillon equipped with a variable inertia balance wheel.


A single barrel regulates the energy of the timepiece and maintains the oscillations of the balance wheel at 18,000 vibrations per hour for an autonomy of 10 days.

Only sixty Astérium movements - whose bridges and plate  are delicately chiseled - will be manufactured across all versions, including requests for unique pieces.

The case has a diameter of 46 mm  with a thickness of 18.3 mm (including glasses) and can be ordered in red gold, white gold or platinum.

The Bovet 1822 Récital 20 Astérium has a price of Swiss Francs 335,000 / US$ 350,000 in red or white gold. bovet.com


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Time and Watches: Bovet 1822 - Récital 20 Astérium
Bovet 1822 - Récital 20 Astérium
Bovet 1822 Recital 20 Asterium. With the new Récital 20 Astérium model, high-end watch manufacture Bovet 1822 invites watch enthusiasts to explore the sky and constellations as they are visible from the Earth by mapping them out on a dome of translucent blue quartz. Only sixty Astérium movements will be manufactured across all versions, including requests for unique pieces. The Bovet 1822 Récital 20 Astérium has a price of around US$ 350,000 in red or white gold.
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Time and Watches
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