In order to create a truly unique timepiece for the exclusive Treasure of the World line, Louis Moinet made the dial of its new tourbillon white gold watch of an extremely rare material, red stromatolite. Known as the oldest fossils on the Earth, stromatolites are limestone structures which date back 3.5 billion years and those in red color are particularly rare, which makes Louis Moinet’s Red Stromatolite one-of-a-kind watch even more impressive.
Stromatolites got their name from the Greek words STROMA (carpet) and LITHOS (stone). It is possible that these ancient fossils have been the only life forms until around 550 million years ago. Dominating marine life between 3,500 and 500 million years ago, they helped development of new forms of life, before the emergence of more complex organisms caused their decline in the late Precambrian era.
Today, they are extremely rare and exist in just several places on the planet. Pieces of red stromatolites used for Louis Moinet’s watch come from shallow, hypersaline lakes and lagoons of Western Australia and they are formed from cyanobacteria, most known as blue-green algae. They red color comes from iron oxide. The delicate task of cutting the most beautiful parts of the fossil was entrusted to Daniel Haas, a specialist in the selection and cutting of rare and precious stones. He spent dozens of hours, manually cutting and polishing ultra-thin portions of the fossil, until the stone was finally fitted in a brass base, which required great skills and precision.
High End-Mechanism and Luxurious Case
Louis Moinet Red Stromatolite watch is powered by an exclusive hand-winding tourbillon movement which is exhibited on both sides of the case. From the dial side, you can observe a beautifully executed tourbillon cage and a main spring, as well as a highly-polished and hand-bevelled vertical bridge. This great mechanism comprises 19 jewels and provides a superb power-reserve of 72 hours. It oscillates at the frequency of 21,600 vibrations per hour, while the tourbillon cage makes one rotation per minute. The plate comes with Côtes du Jura engraving.
Constructed of 50 parts, the robust case comes in 18 karat white gold with the diameter of 47mm. The case-back is secured with four screws and engraved with the individual number and with the inscription ‘Piece Unique’. The central part is covered by sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment. A Louisiana alligator strap with an 18 karat white gold folding clasp matches the color of the red stromatolite dial that displays hour and minute functions.
Earlier this year, as a part of its Treasure of the World series, Louis Moinet in the collaboration with Daniel Haas also created a red gold version of the Red Stromatolite watch, a-one-of-a-kind Vertalis Australian Opal watch (from a beautiful crystal opal with an amazing sparkling reflection), as well as a Vertalis Biggs Jasper watch (with the dial made of a jasper stone).