In celebration of the 50th anniversary of its Aug. 2, 1971, mission to the moon, Bulova unveiled the 50th Anniversary Lunar Pilot Apollo 15 Limited Edition timepiece today.
The watch is a replication of the personal Bulova chronograph worn by David Scott, Apollo 15’s mission commander, who was the seventh man to walk on the moon and the first to drive the Lunar Rover. (That original moondust-stained watch, by the way, was sold for $1.625 million at auction in 2015.) Just 5,000 limited-edition timepieces have been produced; each watch comes in special packaging with a storybook and commemorative NASA coin.
NASA was the first agency to reach out to Bulova in the 1950s to help with the U.S. space effort, recognizing the watchmaker’s engineering expertise. That partnership lasted until the ’70s, and during that time NASA utilized the brand’s Accutron tuning fork movement, allowing for watches, instrumental panel clocks, and timekeeping mechanisms to take part in many missions.
Crafted specifically for conditions in space, the Lunar Pilot watch was used to track time, which helped to ensure the astronauts did not run out of oxygen, water, or battery power in their portable life-support-system backpacks. It was also used to back up the onboard timers for the critical reentry into the Earth’s atmosphere. The timepiece performed flawlessly, withstanding pressures of changing atmospheric conditions, fluctuating temperatures, and gravitational shifts.
The 50th Anniversary Lunar Pilot replicates that original timepiece, but updates it with a 45 mm titanium grade-5 case and gold-tone accents and pushers. The watch features the original Bulova logo and dial layout with blue sapphire crystal and anti-reflection coating. Water resistant to 50 meters, the watch has a screw down caseback featuring a lunar relief design and individualized number.
Unveiled during the summer of billionaires’ space tourism, this watch will surely strike a chord with watch collectors.
Top: Bulova 50th Anniversary Lunar Pilot Apollo 15 Limited Edition watch, $995 (all photos courtesy of Bulova)Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
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