9T Labs AG, experts in the production of continuous fiber components, has completed its most recent project within the company’s ongoing collaboration with Oris SA, the Swiss manufacturer of luxury mechanical watches – the ProPilot Altimeter watch. Oris decided to partner with 9T Labs, again, after the recent success of the Oris’ Coulson limited-edition watch.
The carbon fiber composite cases for the Oris ProPilot Altimeter wristwatch were produced using 9T Labs’ Red Series Additive Fusion Technology (AFT). This high-functioning timepiece, which indicates an altitude of up to 6,000 meters (19,700 feet), is an updated version of the 2014 original. The ProPilot Altimeter’s carbon fiber composite watch case is 70 grams lighter, and 1 mm thinner, than the original stainless-steel case.
“Oris takes pride in setting new standards in watchmaking,” said Richard Siegrist, product development engineer at Oris SA. “Our ProPilot Altimeter is the first and only watch to combine an automatic mechanical movement with a mechanical altimeter. Therefore, when we decided to improve upon the original design, we chose to continue our ground-breaking work with 9T Labs. Together, we created a lighter, thinner carbon composite watch case with a distinctive tree ring pattern. Through our previous collaboration on the Coulson watch case, Oris has already benefited from the technology, expertise, and Swiss excellence that 9T Labs brings to the table. We expect this project to be just as successful.”
Traditional composite manufacturing methods typically include prepreg lamination and wet layup. In comparison, 9T Labs’ Red Series AFT platform uses specialized software, hardware, and sustainable processes to minimize waste and accelerate production.
The AFT solution uses a high-performance thermoplastic, such as polyether ketone ketone (PEKK) or polyether ether ketone (PEEK) as the composite matrix, which is reinforced with up to 60% carbon, glass, or basalt fiber. For the ProPilot Altimeter watch case, Oris specified a composite based on PEKK polymer, which features high mechanical performance, high density, and excellent heat and chemical resistance. It is reinforced with 60% continuous carbon fiber – resulting in lightweight, high stiffness and tensile strength, and consistent quality across all watch cases.
“9T Labs is establishing the new composite production standard to deliver stronger, lighter parts with exceptional performance, lower costs, and minimal waste,” said Giovanni Cavolina, chief commercial officer and co-founder of 9T Labs. “We are deeply gratified that Oris shares this vision and has used 9T Labs’ technology for the series production of carbon fiber composite cases for two of its prestigious watches. We look forward to continuing this successful collaboration and to demonstrating to other industries the measurable advantages of our unique, all-in-one manufacturing solution.”