Time Forward

2012 the story begins...


HYT was born of a question. Time flows and only gains meaning through content. So why limit its measurement to indicating the now in splendid isolation, with needle-sharp hands or fleeting digital displays? Determined that its rebellion should make statements and waves, a multi-disciplinary think-tank set out to create timepieces that visibly connect the past, present and future. The HYT answer is a watch that overcomes the force of gravity to indicate the passage of time with liquids. Highly advanced technology took its cue from philosophy to mirror time’s intrinsic fluidity.

The rest is history. To be precise, it’s history that began 3,400 years ago with the Clepsydras, or water clocks, of the Pharaohs. These so-called “water thieves” transported H2O from one container to another to measure elapsed or “stolen” time. This meaningful visualization of the transition of time seemingly disappeared until 2012, when HYT broke new scientific ground, inventing a wristwatch integrating a patented fluidic module. A colored liquid documents the recent past; a transparent fluid indicates the foreseeable future. Their meeting point is a meniscus, aka the now.

Today HYT is an ecosystem that unites science, hi-technology, philosophy, art and design. Based in Neuchâtel, at the heart of the traditional Swiss watchmaking region, a dedicated team of 43 individuals makes liquid time real time. Their radical wristwatches harmoniously incorporate a mechanical watch movement as the trigger to the fluid propulsion. They make total sense of time – time and time again.

The principle?

Two flexible reservoirs with a capillary attached at each end. In one, a coloured liquid; in the other, a transparent one. Keeping them apart is the repulsion force of the molecules in each fluid. The two reservoirs at 06:00 also referred to as bellows are made of a highly resistant, flexible alloy. Watchmaking is used to activate the system via a piston that drives the bellow on the left (the active bellow). When the active below is compressed, the second expands, and vice versa, resulting in the movement of the liquids in the capillary. As the hours go by, the coloured liquid advances. The meniscus marks the separation point between the two liquids, indicating the hour. At 06:00, the coloured liquid moves backwards, returning to its original position in what is known as a ‘Rewind’.