Watch enthusiasts will look at their high-quality dials many times a day. When it comes to protecting the dial of a luxury watch from the challenges of everyday life, sapphire is the protective cover material of choice. As a transparent and colorless, flat disc, it can preserve the flawlessness of a watch for many years – thanks, but not least, to its outstanding hardness, which is close to that of a diamond.
Sapphire: Industry standard with weaknesses
Yet sapphire is not completely immune to scratches and chips, and the material reflects twice as much as glass. To meet the extraordinarily high demands of the luxury watch industry, a highly specialized industry has been developing sapphire coatings for decades that reduce scratches to a minimum. However, additional coatings are neccesary which not only reduce the reflection but also create the characteristic residual color that is typical for each watch brand.
Of ideal and feasibility
It’s exactly this residual reflection that remains one of the biggest challenges in developing a coating for luxury watches. The color impression should never be yellowish or reddish, as this would suggest an aging effect. The luxury watch manufacturers rather desired a watch glass whose color perception is freely adjustable and remains durable for a long time. These ideal visions were in part far from what was technically feasible.
SCHOTT researchers saw the possibility of modifying an existing, patented scratch-resistant coating for glass-ceramics also for watches and combined it with an anti-reflective coating. They worked their way towards the specifications of the watch industry and developed corresponding prototypes.
“Our goal was to develop a coating with a color-neutral residual reflection even after abrasion. This is why we came up with the idea of adapting an existing coating for glass-ceramics”
— Christian Henn, Coating Expert & Scientist, SCHOTT Research & Development
LUXADUR™ – Watch glass. Redefined.
The result of the project? A coated sapphire watch glass that sets new standards for luxury watches in terms of durability and color fidelity.
Scratch resistant and anti-reflective
The scratch resistance of LUXADUR™ is proven with a set of analytical tests.
Consistent color across different angles
LLUXADUR™ maintains a stable color impression of the watch glass under various viewing angles.
Consistent color impression on scuffed surfaces
LUXADUR™ secures the watch’s luxury look especially under harsh conditions.
LUXADUR™ allows luxury watchmakers to choose the color of the residual reflected light.
LUXADUR™ Easy-to-Clean adds an additional coating layer protecting the surface from fingerprints & dirt.
“Customer specifications finally have to be manufactured on an industrial scale. After defining the color coordinates, we conducted test series on our sputter machines to scale up the process from R&D to mass production. Hence, we were able to achieve large quantities.”
— Dr. Ulf Brauneck, Expert Engineer, SCHOTT Suisse SA
The luxury watch industry has been setting new technological standards for decades. SCHOTT is actively helping to shape this journey with LUXADUR™.
Let’s define tomorrow’s luxury watches.