For a newly announced partnership with the Starmus Science Festival and in support of its Stephen Hawking Medal for Science Communication award, Omega will present each of this year’s three winners with a special 18k yellow gold Omega Speedmaster watch. The association with a space and science festival like Starmus should make sense to anyone familiar with Omega and the Speedmaster’s history with NASA and its continued involvement in related projects. Let’s now look at the Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Chronograph Starmus Science Award Gold watch, which is not available for sale, and its purpose for existing.
Apart from all the gold and the engraved case back, this Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Chronograph appears to be, in most ways, the classic Moonwatch – the Omega Speedmaster Professional. Here, the 42mm case, as well as the bezel, hands, and applied indices are 18k yellow gold. Essentially, anything that was either steel or white in color has been replaced with gold, including the tachymeter scale and the printed elements of the dial. Fully monochromatic, gold looks as lovely as ever paired with black here on the dial, bezel, and leather strap.
Although Omega doesn’t give a lot of details on these specific limited models, we can assume that the specs are mostly consistent with the standard Moonwatch. Of course, inside is the manually wound Omega 1861 cam-actuated chronograph movement that is more or less the modern version of the movement that famously accompanied the NASA astronauts to the Moon.
As mentioned, the typical seahorse logo-engraved case back is replaced here with a special engraving for the Starmus Festival and the Stephen Hawking Medal for Science Communication. The engraving matches the actual medal that winners will receive in addition to the watch. It depicts the first ever human spacewalk by Russian cosmonaut Alexei Leonov (who was most likely wearing a long-lost Soviet government-issued watch), with the “Red Special” guitar of Queen’s lead guitarist Brian May emerging from beyond the horizon, and the Starmus logo.
Why Brian May’s electric guitar, you may ask? Mr. May also happens to have a doctorate in astrophysics and had a hand in founding the Starmus Festival along with Garik Israelian. That kind of makes him a rockstar in more than one sense of the word. The Starmus Festival has a mission of communicating about and promoting science to the public. The three Stephen Hawking Medal for Science Communication awards will go to three different categories; Science Writing, Films, and Music and Art. Finally, engraved around the edge of the case back are the words “Winner of the Stephen Hawking Medal for Science Communication.”
Omega has stated that only three such Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Chronograph 18k gold watches will be produced for the Starmus Festival and that this design will not be offered for retail sale, so no pricing information is available. Still a young festival, Starmus IV will be held between June 18 and June 23, 2017, in Trondheim, Norway, and the winners of the medals and the watches will be announced at that time. omegawatches.com