Patek Philippe has long dominated the narrative for fine watchmaking, creating extraordinary timepieces that have challenged the way we think about horology. Among the numerous impressive and confounding complications mastered by the firm, it is perhaps their poetic interpretation of the night sky above us that is most visually dazzling.
Patek Philippe's first iteration of the Celestial was launched in 2002, condensing the magnitude of the night sky onto the wrist for the very first time in watchmaking history. The celestial chart rotates counter clockwise, showing the progression of stars relative to the meridian passage of Sirius. Simultaneously, the meridian passage and phases of the moon can be seen. 25 trillion (25,000,000,000,000) ratio combinations were researched by Patek Philippe to determine the greatest accuracy for this display. This gives some sense of the tremendous challenges that the production of this highly complicated model posed to the company's watchmakers.
Indeed, to truly appreciate the ingenious display of this celestial map, we must observe that the movement operates three separate sapphire crystal discs, delicately colored and layered harmoniously to create a vision of the night sky on one dial plane.
Ten years after the launch of this triumphant timepiece, Patek Philippe introduced the present model, the Ref. 6102, improving upon the original case design, and including a calendar around the dial.
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