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Bending Time and Space: Launch of the Xeric Trappist-1 Moonphase Watch

By November 9, 2017 No Comments

Trappist-1 Collection from Xeric Watches

“Earlier this year, NASA discovered a solar system with the most potential for life: Trappist-1.

My name is Mitch Greenblatt, co-founder and designer of Xeric Watches. When I heard about the Trappist-1 system, I, along with the rest of the world, was captivated by the possibility of these potentially habitable planets. I’ve always had a fascination with space, and my mind instantly raced to what time would be like on their worlds.

I took the idea of a Trappist-1-based watch back to the team at Xeric, and we got to work.

Several aspects of the Trappist-1 Moonphase design make it stand apart from other traditional watches.

A large convex grille hovers over the watch dial and alludes to space-time as it bends around massive planets and stars. The grille also serves as a window to view an orbiting planetary system that is telling you the time.

The superluminova planets represent the hours and minutes, with the “hands” moving like a traditional watch.

The Trappist-1’s luminescent moon display shows the current lunar phase.

The domed crystal spans across the entire dial and is made from a space-age material called Hesalite that was initially requested by NASA to withstand the harsh environment of space.

The straps are made using full grain leather from Horween, one of the oldest continuously running tanneries in the United States, and they pay tribute to the ridge lines seen on astronaut gloves.

The independent spirit and community of Kickstarter remains the best place to develop and launch our exploratory designs at Xeric. We’re excited to present the Trappist-1 Moonphase watch.”

Watch the video in the Kickstarter campaign.

View the entire Xeric collection at

Xeric Trappist-1 Glowing Dial

Trappist-1 Q&A

Q: What is the Trappist-1 solar system?

A: This newly discovered solar system is a series of seven planets located 12 parsecs (39 light years) away from us and orbiting a red dwarf star slightly larger than Jupiter. During observation of this planetary system, researchers were able to measure the planets’ orbital periods and thus calculate their size and distance from the central star. This critical information allowed them to deduce that these new worlds were within a habitable zone where liquid water and even plant life may be present.

Q: How was the Trappist-1 solar system translated into a watch?

A: We used this newly found solar system to imagine what a voyage to these planets may be like. The grille provides a window into the the vast starry backdrop and creates a framework similar to what is seen on the International Space Station’s observatory ports.

-The grille design also references Einstein’s theory of relativity which helps visualize space and time as a fabric that wraps around massive planets and stars

-Super luminova stars, planets, and a moon help bring the glowing depths of space to your wrist.

-A Hesalite crystal helps protect the watch from the extreme conditions and is shatter proof unlike sapphire which can be a hazard in zero gravity environments and space travel.

Xeric Trappist-1 Moonphase Watch

Q: How do you read the time?

A: The time is displayed through 2 planets that orbit around the central moonphase. The larger planet indicates hours while the smaller planet indicates minutes and can be read like any other traditional watch. A north star also indicates the current hour on the centralized Roman numeral chapter ring. The moonphase displays the current lunar cycle from full moon to new moon. A magnified “star” date window is displayed at the 6 o’clock position below the moonphase.

Q: What are some of the inspirations for the design of the grille?

A: The grille design was initially inspired by Victor Vasarely’s ground breaking optical artwork during the 1960s which created beautiful 3D objects that seem to transcend the 2D surface they were painted on. One of his most famous works, the Vega-nor uses square spaces to create distorted quadrants that add depth to a purely flat image. The spatial depth he created draws many parallels to the curvature of spacetime as it wraps around massive planets and stars. By incorporating these design cues into a domed surface, we were able to increase the visual impact while keeping the watch thin and comfortable to wear.

The grille also serves as a window into space, similar to observatory space decks seen in many scifi films and modern space port designs. The International Space Station’s has recently made a new addition known as the Cupola, allowing astronauts to get a better view of their surroundings. The Cupola is a module comprised of 7 panels in a dome layout making it the largest window ever used in space. The geometric framework inspired us to design our own window to space as interstellar travel becomes more prevalent.

The Lunar and Celestial Display

Q: What is Hesalite crystal and how does it differ from sapphire?

A: The material was introduced in the 1960s as a crystal replacement for space bound watches. The first watch to be worn on the moon by Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong had to withstand the harsh environment of space. A standard sapphire crystal poses many issues in the event of an impact in zero gravity as tiny fragments of floating glass could spell disaster for the cabin and onboard crew. To remedy this, NASA replaced sapphire crystals with Hesalite versions as they have a higher resistance to impact and do not shatter like traditional glass. The material is still being used today by astronauts aboard space missions and the ISS proving its durability and effectiveness. This space-tested material provides many other exceptional properties over sapphire crystals. Hesalite has exceptional light transmission with minimal refraction, meaning that the dial below does not get distorted or magnified like a traditional domed sapphire crystal would. Thus, the display below is clear and easy to read at any viewing angle.

Xeric's most popular colorway for the Trappist-1

Q: What challenges did you encounter in the production of Trappist-1 and how did you overcome them?

A: Multiple iterations of the hour and minute discs were required to get the optimal starry night with Super-LumiNova. Once the printing was finalized we had to fine tune the clearance to prevent these large discs from colliding and ensuring accurate timekeeping. We worked with multiple factories to test out different finishing options and get a final piece that looks and feels how we had initially envisioned the project.

Q: Can you tell us a little bit about who you are, and how the company came to be?

A: Xeric is shaking up the watch world by designing limited edition mechanical timepieces like you’ve never seen before. After all, we are watch collectors first and foremost, and it’s our passion to create unexpected timepieces.

The entire collection of Xeric Trappist-1 Moonphase Watches

Watch the video in the Kickstarter campaign.

View the entire Xeric collection at