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Hydromechanical watch fuses fluid mechanics with haute horlogerie

The new H2 watch from the Hydromechanical Horologists uses a unique bellows to pump liquid around the dial to indicate hours.

(Credit: HYT Watchs)

The new H2 watch from the Hydromechanical Horologists (HYT Watches) uses a unique bellows to pump liquid around the dial to indicate hours.

HYT took the horological world by storm last year at BaselWorld, where it unveiled the H1: a watch that combined mechanical and fluid mechanics for a uniquely stylish timepiece.

As we grow closer to this year's watchmaking fair, the Swiss manufacture has unveiled its latest creation: the H2, created in partnership with Audemars Piguet. Like the H1 before it, the H2 displays in its skeleton dial a twin bellows, used to pump fluorescent liquid in a circular tube around the outside of the watch's face. This forms a retrograde hour indicator, giving the watch a stunningly different appearance.

(Credit: HYT Watchs)

This feat of engineering has by necessity given the H2 quite a large profile: the case comes in at 48.8 millimetres in diameter by 17.9 millimetres high, so there's no way anyone could miss seeing it on your wrist.

At 12 o'clock, a dome covers the balance spring, while at 6 o'clock, the bellows reach up and out in a symmetrical V shape, over which the minute hand "jumps". At 3 o'clock, an HNR indicator lets you know whether the watch is in neutral, time-setting or winding mode. Interestingly, the power reserve indicator is simply the winding spring at 9 o'clock; the more tightly wound the spring, the more time of its 192-hour (eight-day) power reserve remains.

Inside the satin-brushed, black titanium case ticks an exclusive, manual-winding HYT calibre 28-jewel movement that has a frequency of 21,600vib/h (3Hz), and the titanium bridges are coated with micro-blasted black PVD and titanium-coloured satin-finished accents. The watch is water resistant to 50 metres and boasts a rubberised alligator leather strap.

Pricing has not been made available (the H1 started at US$45,000, for reference), but HYT has announced that the watch has been limited to just 50 pieces.