DMLS or Direct Metal Laser Sintering and Carbotech, is the secret behind Panerai’s newest creation – Luminor Marina DMLS 44mm PAM 1662 – unveiled last week at Watches & Wonders 2020.
What is DMLS? What is Carbotech?
Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) technology is a futuristic 3D printing process by which titanium powder is melted in tiny amounts by a high power fiber optic laser, layer by layer, i.e, 30 microns (0.03 mm) at a time, until the case takes a solid shape. It is a one of a kind process that allows for the interior of the case to be hollowed out, hence making the watch incredibly light and resilient. On the other hand Carbotech (First introduced by Panerai in 2017) is an alloy that consists of thin layers of carbon fibres superimposed on each other, orientated alternately (a good seven layers per millimeter), fused together under high-pressure temperature-controlled conditions, and finally further consolidated with an advanced polymer. Carbotech is remarkable for its mechanical properties, its lightness and its resistance to stress and corrosion. The entire process involving these materials are obviously a lot more difficult to work on in comparison to say gold or even stainless steel.
Though a whopping 44mm wide, the case wears better than you would expect, with its short lugs giving it a perfect fit on your wrist. DMLS and Carbotech have been used for the bezel, crown and lever of the Safety Lock crown protection bridge. The screwed dodecagonal case back crafted in titanium with black DLC coating, ensures 300m of water resistance.
Another very compelling aspect is the dial. Everything feels so right for the space it is in. An Anthracite dial with a matte finish compliments the case, and features Arabic numerals and indexes in grey Super-LumiNova with green luminescence. A subsidiary small seconds display occupies the 9 o’clock position. The small seconds counter also features luminous indexes marking 15-second graduations. There’s also a date display at 3 o’clock.
Yes it’s the outside that is really the highlight here, but the mechanical heart of the Panerai Luminor Marina DMLS 44mm PAM 1662 cannot be ignored. Powering the watch is a self-winding P.9010 Caliber that is just 6 mm thick, entirely designed and developed by the Panerai Manufacture in Neuchâtel. It is equipped with a rapid time adjustment function that also changes the date and is supported by a 3-day power reserve supplied by a double barrel.
Securing the case is a black Panerai Sportech strap with anthracite stitching. A second technical rubber strap, in black, completes the package, together with a specific screwdriver for its removal and for replacing the buckle.