Omega - WINNING ICONS – Legendary Watches of the 20th Century New York Thursday, October 26, 2017 | Phillips
  • Manufacturer: Omega
    Year: 1978
    Reference No: 145.022
    Movement No: 44’818’062
    Case No: Outside case back engraved P/N SED12100312-301
    Model Name: Speedmaster ‘Alaska III’
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 861 (Lemania 1873), 17 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: NATO strap
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel buckle
    Dimensions: 40mm diameter
    Accessories: Printout of communication from Omega Museum describing Alaska III Project.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Sixty years ago, Omega launched the iconic Speedmaster. Twelve years later, it earned the ultimate distinction – selected by NASA for their space program to be worn during the Apollo 11 moon-landing mission. According to communication from the Omega Museum accompanying this lot, after being re-qualified by NASA, a very small batch of Speedmasters were delivered in 1978 for NASA’s Space Shuttle program following design studies code-named ‘Alaska III’. Forced to comply with the U.S. government’s ‘Buy American Act’, Omega worked with an American case manufacturer and chose the ‘Star Watch Case Company’ of Michigan for these Alaska III models. Fifty-six were ordered by NASA and issued to astronauts, with a further batch being ordered soon after. The present lot is of the latter batch, and has not been issued. Fresh to the auction market, its details are utterly fascinating. While the dials of these watches were crafted in Switzerland, it’s lacking “Swiss Made” at 6 o’clock. In virtually unused condition, it has sharp lug bevels, with a case back featuring the Star Case Company hallmark, as well as the NASA script SED12100312-301, both of which are perfectly crisp. The ‘radial’ dial is unique to this model, and features subdials with radially-oriented print that is visually pleasing. This ‘Alaska III Speedmaster’ is one of the most intriguing examples of the model to ever appear on the market. With its unique configuration, direct linkage to NASA, and exceptional condition it is a superb trophy timepiece. We sincerely thank Petros Protopapas of Omega for his invaluable research on the present lot.

  • Artist Biography


    Swiss • 1848

    Omega's rich history begins with its founder, Louis Brandt, who established the firm in 1848 in La Chaux de Fonds. In 1903, the company changed its name to Omega, becoming the only watch brand in history to have been named after one its own movements. A full-fledged manufacturer of highly accurate, affordable and reliable watches, its sterling reputation enabled them to be chosen as the first watch company to time the Olympic Games beginning in 1932. Its continued focus on precision and reliability ultimately led their Speedmaster chronograph wristwatch to be chosen by NASA in 1965 — the first watch worn on the moon.

    Key models sought-after by collectors include their first, oversized water-resistant chronograph — the reference 2077, early Speedmaster models such as the CK 2915 and 2998, military-issued versions of the Seamaster and oversized chronometer models such as those fitted with their prestigious caliber 30T2Rg.

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Ref. 145.022
An extremely rare, important, and highly attractive prototype stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with radial dial, made for NASA.

Case, dial and movement signed
40mm diameter

$50,000 - 100,000 

Sold for $187,500

Contact Specialist
Paul Boutros
Head of Watches, Americas
+1 212 940 1293

WINNING ICONS – Legendary Watches of the 20th Century

New York Auction 26 October 2017