The famous OMEGA Speedmaster's history began in 1969 when it was the first watch to reach the surface of the moon on the wrist of Buzz Aldrin. The watch's history actually begins in 1957, when OMEGA introduced the Ref. CK 2915 as a sports and racing chronograph. This was the first model with the triple-register dial layout that would become so iconic to the brand. In 1959, the Ref. CK 2998 came on the scene, soon to be followed by the ST 105.003 and the ST 105.012.
In 1962, astronaut Wally Schirra (pictured below) opted to take his CK 2998 with him onto the Mercury-Atlas 8. NASA then decided to test three watch brands under extreme conditions for possible use in space: Rolex, Longines, and OMEGA. The winner was the OMEGA Speedmaster. Since then, OMEGA has had a strong relationship with the space program, evidenced by the famous Apollo 11 mission and every subsequent Apollo mission. When NASA approved the Speedmaster for space use, OMEGA renamed the model the Speedmaster Professional giving it a new reference number as well: 145.012. This timepiece is also known as the Moonwatch.
Throughout the history of the OMEGA Speedmaster and Speedmaster Professional, the watch has undergone other modifications and updates over the years, and OMEGA has released many commemorative and limited edition versions as well. The Speedmaster name has even been applied to automatic mechanism watches, day and day-date watches, tuning fork movement watches, and the digital LCD Speedmaster Quartz. Even so, the history of OMEGA Speedmaster watches will always be known for its performance as NASA's 'moonwatch,' forever valued for its precision and reliability.
Video: OMEGA History
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