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Watch Word This Week: Super-Luminova

Like mechanical watches that glow in the dark? Chances are, you have a Japanese company to thank for that.

Like Scotch tape or Jet Ski, Super-Luminova is one of those brand names that have practically become generic terms. One of the most popular brands of lume used in watches today, Super-Luminova is the trade name for a phosphorescent pigment, essentially a glow-in-the-dark chemical compound based on strontium aluminate. Luminova was invented by Nemoto & Co, a Japanese company specialising in luminous paint for timepieces, which then formed a joint venture with a Swiss partner to create Super-Luminova that’s Swiss-made.

Unlike radium and tritium, which glow in the dark because of radiation, Super-Luminova is entirely safe, storing energy from exposure to a light source, which then causes it to glow.


Image: Senator Chronograph Panorama Date by Glashutte Original.