Bell & Ross has created both an emblematic and functional watch that meets the specific requirements of Patrouille de France pilots: the BR 03-94 PATROUILLE DE FRANCE.
The case for the new BR 03 PATROUILLE DE FRANCE is made of high-tech ceramic. This material holds a privileged position in the aerospace sector, with uses including the manufacture of parts subject to high temperatures, exposure to acids, corrosion, and erosion. It is also found in the design of heat shields and noses for rockets. Almost as tough as a diamond, ceramic is extremely hardwearing and has an unchanging color as it is dyed in the mass. It is also lighter than steel, hypoallergenic and has thermal control properties, which increase the wearer’s comfort.
The BR 03-94 PATROUILLE DE FRANCE houses a mechanical chronograph movement with automatic winding which offers tried-and-tested reliability. Available to the public, an identical limited to 100 pieces quartz edition version of this watch will outfit the Patrouille de France flying team.
When on their mission, time measurement is the determining parameter. As an essential tool in aerial navigation for measuring short time periods, the chronograph is the main complication of aviation. It is equipped with a bi-directional bezel with a 60-minute scale to mark intervals in time.
Synchronization is fundamental for these pilots especially when, they chain together several scenes with 2, 4, 6 or 8 jets. Their safety and quality of the show rely on that. Having generally, eight pilots sometimes nine flying as one at over 600km/h, subjected to accelerations exceeding 6g, precision must be absolute. It is the same for their watches. Thought for an optimal readability of the pilot while flying, the chronograph seconds hand features in the centre of the dial which is the most important time measurement tool.
The new chronograph timepiece is both a tool and an icon. By adopting the distinctive design features of this iconic French acrobatic patrol, the BR 03-94 PATROUILLE DE FRANCE asserts a strong identity from the very first glance.
Precision and legibility are the two key criteria for the pilots. The colors used on the dial provides a visual contrast to offer optimal readability.
At 600 km/h each second counts. Each of them must be identified rapidly. To enhance its legibility, the hands used for the chronograph functions are distinguished by red tips. In aviation, this is the one of the colors of essential features and test flights, known for its frank, clear and dynamic properties. The dark blue dial echoes the color of the sky as well as the patrol’s color identity.
The numerals, indexes and hands are white and photoluminescent to ensure perfect visibility both day and night. Designed for a professional use, the insignia was placed on the dial, so it does not disturb the readability. This logo also features on their dashboards’ plane. Pilots use their watches mainly during the ground phases until take-off. The BR 03-94 PATROUILLE DE FRANCE is equipped with a black natural rubber strap. In the summer, rubber is the ideal material to preserve the wrists of pilots throughout the season.