OMEGA - COSMONAUT ANATOLY ARTSEBARSKY'S 'FLOWN' SPEEDMASTER
PROFESSIONAL - 144 DAYS, 15 MINUTES & 21 SECONDS IN SPACE - WORN ON 6 OPEN
SPACE 'WALKS' FOR 33 HOURS - THE ONLY WATCH EVER TO SPEND EXTENDED TIME IN
Omega, 'Speedmaster Professional', movement No. 48261214, Ref. 145.022 ST. Made circa 1988.
Exceptionally important and internationally historic, water-resistant, stainless steel wristwatch with
round button chronograph, registers, tachometer and a stainless steel Omega link bracelet with
deployant clasp. Accompanied by an Omega box signed by the astronaut and "6 EVA" and Certificate
signed by Anatoly Artsebarsky.
CThree-body, polished and brushed, antimagnetic iron dust cover, screw down case back with logo
and engraved: "First Watch Worn on the Moon, Flight Qualified by Nasa for All Manned Space Missions,"
tachometer graduation on the black bezel to 500 UPH, lyre lugs.
DBlack with luminous bâton indexes, subsidiary sunk dials for the seconds, the 12-hour and 30-minute
registers. Luminous white baton hands.
MCal. 861, copper-colored, 17 jewels, straight-line lever escapement, monometallic balance, shock
absorber, self compensating flat balance spring.
Dial, case and movement signed.
NotesDIAM. 42 mm. THICKNESS 15 mm.
Provenance: from the artsebarsky collection
`Flown` Omega Speedmasters - watches that have
actually been worn in space are quite naturally the
most coveted and desirable of all the Speedmasters and
almost never reach the open market. This historic watch,
No. 48261214, once owned by the Ukrainian-born
Russian cosmonaut Anatoly Artsebarsky is one of the
very few Omega Speedmasters in private hands to have
actually been worn in space and of all the `flown` Speedmasters
no other watch has ever spent so many hours
in open space - a total of 33 hours, it is therefore not
only an extremely significant watch in the history of the
Omega Speedmaster but a uniquely historic world-class
object in its own right. The provenance is verified by the
accompanying certificate signed by Anatoly Artsebarsky.
Artsebarsky spent five months on the MIR Space Station
in 1991 and during that mission he made an unprecedented
six 'walks' into open space, during each of those
EVAs (extra-vehicular activities) he wore this watch.
Artsebarsky was born in the
Ukraine in 1956 and became a
cosmonaut in 1985. In 1991 he
was the 35-year-old Commander
of Soyuz TM-12, leading the
first joint Russian-British space
mission and had the first Briton in
space Ã¢Â€Â“ Helen Sharman Ã¢Â€Â“ along
with Russian Sergei Krikalev, as
fellow crew. To this day, Krikalev
holds the record for most hours
spent in space. Setting off on 18th
May 1991 from the same pad
that launched Yuri Gagarin some thirty years before, TM-12Ã¢Â€Â™s mission
was to dock with the Mir space station, relieve the station crew and
then spend the next five months constructing a space tower for use
with the control module. On 26th May, a few days after docking with
the Mir space station, the rest of the crew flew back to Earth leaving
Artsebarsky and Krikalev onboard with a list of repairs and projects,
including the tower construction. After over 145 days in space and six
EVAs, Artsebarsky made his return and was immediately made a hero
of the Soviet Union and given the Order of Lenin (among the last ever
such award given), as well as being made a Pilot-Cosmonaut of the
USSR and receiving the Medal for Merit in Space Exploration. While he
was in orbit, the failed coup dÃ¢Â€Â™etat against Mikhail Gorbachev rocked
the Soviet Union, setting in motion events which led to the end of the
Soviet Union on January 1, 1992.
The Omega Speedmaster
A Speedmaster was first reported
to have been worn in space by
Wally Schirra aboard Mercury-Atlas
8 in 1962. Three years later
it was just one of a number of
watches from different companies
that were tested by NASA
under extreme conditions of temperature,
pressure, vibration and
noise. The evaluation concluded
in March 1965, with the selection of the Omega Speedmaster as the
perfect watch for space missions. Manual, because automatically
winding watches do not work without gravity, it survived all the tests
while remaining largely within five seconds per day rate.
Gus Grissom and John Young wore the first officially qualified Speedmasters
on Gemini 3 on March 23, 1965. Several months later, Ed
White made the first US space walk during Gemini 4 with a Speedmaster
strapped to the outside of his spacesuit. This EVA (Extra Vehicular
Activity) was widely used in OmegaÃ¢Â€Â™s subsequent marketing for
the Speedmaster and the EVA count has since become a significant
factor in evaluating these historical timepieces. Watches worn outside
vehicles in deep space remain very rare.
Speedmasters were used throughout the early manned Apollo space
missions and finally reached the moon, along with man, on Apollo 11.
Neil Armstrong actually left his Speedmaster inside the lunar module
as a backup after the moduleÃ¢Â€Â™s electronic timer had malfunctioned,
but Buzz Aldrin wore his and the Speedmaster made history by being
the first watch worn on the moon Ã¢Â€Â“ and since then has always been
known as the Moon Watch. It continued to play a significant role in
space history, even providing the critical timings for the mid-course
correction for Apollo 13, which allowed for the crewÃ¢Â€Â™s safe return.
NASA has tested various upgrades and developments to the Speedmaster
over the years and it has remained the definitive watch for
astronauts and cosmonauts. Even today, the Moon Watch is being
worn by expedition crews at the International Space Station Ã¢Â€Â“ and
indeed has been by every crew since the arrival of Expedition 1 in