OMEGA unveils Laboratoire de Précision: A deeper level of chronometric testing

Amongst standard chronometric equipment, the Laboratoire de Précision has developed flexible in-house technologies that enable uninterrupted high precision measurements within tailored conditions

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Published: Fri 5 Apr 2024, 3:36 PM

OMEGA has decided that the world of watchmaking needs to take a leap forward, as chronometric testing is introduced inside the new Laboratoire de Précision.

For more than 50 years, the main destination for any mechanical movement in Switzerland after assembly has been Contrôle Officiel Suisse Des Chronomètres (COSC) — who grants the official ‘certified chronometer’ title. Now, the Laboratoire de Précision will also function like COSC, officially authorised by the Swiss Accreditation Service (SAS) to carry out alternative and independent testing. Offering an exceptional new level of precision, the Laboratoire de Précision has been created by OMEGA — a brand that has continuously dedicated itself to improving watchmaking standards and furthering the quality of its world-renowned calibres. Although set-up and operated by OMEGA, the Laboratoire de Précision is completely neutral and independent, offering chronometric testing opportunities for all brands and movement manufacturers.


This neutrality and integrity were a specific requirement of its accreditation as a ‘testing Laboratory according to ISO/IEC17025:2017’ by SAS — a unique body in Switzerland authorised to deliver such an approval. For customers, this officially guarantees that the Laboratoire de Précision will pursue reliable, independent, and impartial testing of watch movements. Measuring movements according to the standard ISO 3159 ‘Timekeeping instruments — wrist-chronometers with spring balance oscillator’, most commonly known as ‘chronometer’, is one of the testing methods that the Laboratoire de Précision is accredited for.

Amongst standard chronometric equipment, the Laboratoire de Précision has developed flexible in-house technologies that enable uninterrupted high precision measurements within tailored conditions such as varying positions and temperatures. This means that it can go much further than today’s industry standard, taking more accurate measurements during the 15 days of chronometer testing, according to the standard ISO 3159. They will be extremely comprehensive, and most importantly, continuous throughout all 15 days — unlike the current method, which only takes precision measurements every 24 hours.


At the Laboratoire de Précision, every beat of the calibre is measured and assessed, with a measurement accuracy ten times higher than the industry standard. The amount of data gathered during the tests, through industrial methods and big data analyses, will allow a brand or movement manufacturer to understand the chronometric performance of all its movements much deeper than ever before, while also helping to improve overall chronometric excellence.

For OMEGA, the arrival of the Laboratoire de Précision represents a great leap forward in precision standards. For example, the recent milestone precision of its Spirate System not only delivers outstanding technology in watchmaking, but it also demands the latest technology in measuring systems. With access to extensive data and crucial technical details, OMEGA will now be able to analyse and improve its calibres for the future and refine the small margins that can determine the reputation of a watchmaker.

Importantly, this operation also allows OMEGA to better integrate chronometric testing into its own supply chain. As part of the Swatch Group, OMEGA is committed to using the internal savoir-faire and expertise within reach, to improve its overall standards of excellence.

The Laboratoire de Précision will have two sites in Switzerland, one in Bienne, and the second in Villeret, together creating a dedicated space of more than 1000m2 for chronometric testing.


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