Bell & Ross BR 03-92 H.U.D
The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 H.U.D emulates the look of a Head-Up Display typically found in military jets and, increasingly, within luxury cars. This new model upholds the design language of the BR 01, first seen in 2005, while encompassing a highly innovative dial display.
Bell & Ross was founded in 1992 by Bruno Belamich and Carlos Rosillo. The surnames of the founders provided the source of the brand’s nomen. Unusually, the luxury marque has dual nationality. Watch production takes place in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, while other departmental functions operate from the firm’s Paris HQ.
From the outset, the brand made watches for professional use. Its target audience comprised of ‘pilots, divers, astronauts and bomb disposal experts’. In 2005, the Maison unveiled the BR 01, a square watch inspired by a cockpit clock typically found in a 1970s aeroplane. The styling of the watch was unique and proved popular, not just with ‘professional’ types, but also style-conscious wearers, appreciating the model’s individuality. In 2007, two years after the BR 01 burst onto the watch scene, the brand unveiled the BR 03 which shared the same styling as its older brother, albeit housed in a smaller case.
Over the years, Bell & Ross has demonstrated much ingenuity, releasing an array of cockpit themed watches. Now, the brand has just announced a new model which emulates the appearance of a Head-Up Display (H.U.D), the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 H.U.D.
The brand’s press release (amended)
Bell & Ross, the luxury watch company and the ultimate reference for professional aviation timepieces, goes back to its origins in high-performance military instruments with a new interpretation of its iconic watch, the BR 03-92 HUD.
Its Instrument collection is directly inspired by the aeronautical essential navigation tools of aircraft cockpit and highlights Bell & Ross’ four fundamental requirements: legibility, functionality, precision and water-resistance.
Fully in line with this collection, the new BR03-92 HUD gets inspiration from the avionics displays of fighter jets equipped with the most cutting-edge technology.
From the cockpit to the wrist
In 2005, the BR 01 was inspired by the cockpit clocks of 1970’s aeroplanes. This iconic watch was designed using high tech materials and complications reflecting the finest watchmaking craftsmanship.
Pushing its exploring aeronautical navigation instruments further, Bell & Ross developed and innovated year after year with a collection of exclusive watches. All of these models resemble the instrument panel of an aircraft and offer both a completely new way of reading time and uncompromising legibility. The absolute necessity for professional use.
It all started in 2010 with the BR 01 RADAR, followed by other singular references such as the BR 01 TURN COORDINATOR and BR 01 HEADING INDICATOR.
In 2020, as part of its continuing quest for innovation and performance, the watchmakers at Bell & Ross turned their attention to the Head-Up Display.
This new introduction completes this Flight Instruments family.
(H.U.D) Head-Up Display
The Head-Up Display, also known as HUD – is a transparent glass screen that displays all information that is essential to fulfil a mission in the pilot’s visual field. For optimal effectiveness, its primary function is to keep the pilot focused on the target ahead without having to take the eyes off their line of sight.
Considered as both technological and safety equipment, the HUD takes on the augmented reality concept. With HUD displaying digital data onto the windshield, pilots can be alerted about everything from the horizon line, altitude or speed to navigation aids such as the flight path vector – indicating the direction the jet is taking.
As a result of this high-performance tool puts the emphasis on legibility and will guide the way day and night. In case of low visibility for instance or no matter the conditions, the screen will adjust in brightness and contrast to optimize the ambient lighting.
Although it was originally used in the military field since the 1950s, the HUD is now also frequently used in civil aviation and automobile industry. The military world has always been a pioneer in numerous fields. It has created unquestionable expertise in the field of avant-garde technology. Its innovations have had various applications in civilian life, such as the Internet, GPS and even business jets.
An avant-garde instrument. A unique watch.
Settling Bell & Ross’ instrumental identity, the design approach of the HUD display hides a treasure chest of sophistication. Technical and graphical tools with tips to translate this display type at the tiny scale of an analogue mechanical watch was an innovative exercise at the brand’s creative studio.
An innovative display
Arranged in tiers, the BR03-92 HUD is built around superimposed levels. This technical construction was thought and conceived by the designers to create an overlay that echoes the real HUD Instrument.
Thus, the concept of Augmented Reality adapted to a timepiece hinges on 3 layers:
- On the upper level, the green-tinted sapphire crystal gives the illusion of the digital HUD-type display, using the surface of the disc dial and that of the crystal. Four brackets are printed on the reverse of the crystal, reminiscing the 4 corners of the HUD line of sight.
- On the middle level, the black and green hands reveal the minutes and seconds. The hand’s centre parts were purposely hidden to further increase the digit analogy and the legibility principles of professional aeronautical instruments.
On the lower level, the hours are indicated by a green triangle marker which appears in the centre through an independent concentric disc which is not graduated. This ultra-light disc was developed to ensure that neither accuracy nor power of the watch was reduced. Furthermore, the disc needs to be sufficiently resistant so as to not become deformed from risk of any friction.
Intense Lum Legibility
There is more than meets the eye to obtain this uncompromising result. Some special coatings are worth noting on this timepiece.
By using the green colour, Bell & Ross recreates the graphic style of this Instrument as closely as possible. The green on the dial mirrors the «computer- type» display of the HUD, and the cases anti-reflective matte black background provides a striking contrast. The sapphire crystal is tinted and obtained through a green pigment coating technique that is applied to its underside.
Additionally, the BR03-92 HUD fits perfectly into the family of instrument watches with the goal of optimum legibility under any circumstances. To provide an intense green light, hours numerals, indices and triangle, as well as the minute-circle and hands, are coated with green Super-LumiNova® C3 treatment. The latter is also applied on the 4 brackets underneath the crystal.
This combination of green-tinted sapphire crystal on green information, emphasizes the ultra-legibility of the dial and its fluorescent brightness to reproduce the HUD digital green display. A true PUNCH OF LIGHT during day and night, that is well suited for ‘Nights Owls’ and pilots.
Mission-oriented for powerful and equipped wrists
Thanks to its augmented display design, the BR 03-92 HUD offers watch aficionados a new perception of time by liberating them from the conventional manner of displaying the time. By magnifying specificities and singularity, the BR 03-92 HUD, produced in a limited edition of only 999 pieces, will also have designers and aeronautic enthusiast’s sights set on it.
This utilitarian approach is completed with both a black rubber and an ultra-resilient black synthetic fabric strap.
Heroic and sporting with state-of-the-art technology, this new model opens up a vast potential for creativity and new Instruments.