A few years back, when I was still in the university days, particularly in the engineering field, where a lot of research takes place. There was one concept in material science that has wowed me more than anything else. A concept that could possibly make the plastics, steels, and silicons obsolete. A material that can be the marriage of mechanical, material science and electrical fields with its vast uses. A material called a carbon nanotube. This is not carbon fibre, nor forged carbon nor a nanofibre. The carbon nanotube is what is known as a fullerene structure. The carbon atoms inside the nanotubes are arranged in terms of their bonding at very exact intervals throughout the structure. The carbon nanotubes are said to be the strongest and stiffest material yet discovered in terms of tensile strength and elasticity. Skeptics out there would say this is hogwash but allow me to show you some numbers to blow your mind. A normal carbon steel normally yields a tensile strength of around 800 - 1000 megapascals (mPa), or simply 0.8 to 1 gigapascals (GPa), a multi-walled carbon nanotube was tested to have a tensile strength of up to 63 (GPa), that is an insane 63 times stronger than a standard steel. This translates into the ability to endure tension weight of equivalent to 6,422 kg on a cable with a cross-section of 1 square-millimeter. The atoms themselves are space at precise intervals with a precise hexagonal pattern resulting to a super light yet super strong material.
Having said enough about the science stuff that I may have had bored you to death. Richard Mille, one of the leading independent watchmaker that has storm the world with his super light RM027 worn by non-other than Rafael Nadal himself. A pioneer in the development of what we call a modern "mechanical" timepiece in this so called digital era, where LCDs and touch screens reign supreme. Yet, the man still prove to the world, that at the very best of technological innovation. Infusing science with art, with cutting edge material and the heritage of mechanical watch making. The man may be on a roll in creating what our generation could say, the modern haute horlogerie.
This year, at the Salon Internation de la Haute Horlogerie, may have did it again. This time with a carbon nanotube case watch. The RM050, tourbillon split seconds chronograph, limited only to 10 piece in carbon nanotubes. Some people would say that the piece Swatch-like and inane, but rest assure this is very real. So real that if we call Swatch as the Second Watch, then perhaps we should start calling RM watches as the Twatch.