Yes, it’s that time of year: the retail juggernaut that is Black Friday is about to commence, with some brands having started offering their respective deals already. Christopher Ward will be joining in on the party – enter BF15 in the promotional code box at checkout for a 15% saving across the entire collection*, including the under-the-radar C60 Abyss. In the meantime, we also had a little fun picking the most exciting blacked-out and stealthy objects we could find…
Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit
It’s difficult to believe considering a profile that wouldn’t look out of place in the Star Wars universe, but the B-2 Spirit heavy bomber is approaching its 30th birthday. First tested in 1989 and officially introduced eight years later, the Spirit (also known as the Stealth Bomber) is capable of breaching anti-aircraft defences thanks to an array of stealth measures. Its distinctive falcon-like shape was designed to reflect radar waves, while the anti-reflective paint on its underside blended well at heights of 50,000ft.
Developed by Surrey NanoSystems, Vantablack previously held the record as the world’s darkest man-made material thanks to its ability to absorb up to 99.965% of visible light. Originally developed as a coating for satellites and the inside of telescopes, it consists of a layer of nanotubes an atom wide; these hollow tubes then absorb light particles similar in a manner akin to a black hole. Put another way, Vantablack is so dark the human eye can’t detect the dimension of a 3D object if it’s coated in the material!
An example of the notion that just because it’s a bad idea doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try it, a sprayable version of Vantablack was sampled on the new BMW X6 this year. One-upping the matte finishes you see these days, it looks like the type of car Bruce Wayne might use if the Batmobile was in for a service. But alas, this X6 will never see the open road. In news that’ll shock few, this is due to safety concerns about visibility!
The F-35B Lightning
Officially known as the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, this single-seat stealth fighter aircraft is known within the Royal Air Force simply as the Lightning. Capable of travelling at Mach 1.6 (1227.63 miles per hour, or 548.8 metres per second) and up to altitudes of 50,000ft, the Lightning uses an array of sensors, systems and radar-absorbent materials to allow it to pass through hostile airspace undetected.
With 138 ordered by the RAF in 2015, an infrastructure upgrade is underway to ensure the Lightning can operate from its RAF Marham base, along with deployment from naval carriers; it’s capable of short take-off or vertical landing.
By their nature, submarines are meant to remain inconspicuous, operating for extended periods underwater and only surfacing for communications or at port. Silent running, the mode that disables any unnecessary systems or vibrations to avoid sonar detection, is crucial in avoiding any unwanted encounters with enemy craft. With the world of submarine operations something of a mystery to the wider public, their mystery is perpetuated by stories of models like the Russia’s stealthy Akula III.
While we’re speaking of items that are capable of operating undetected at depths, the C60 Abyss marks our entry into the blacked-out dive watch market. Boasting a two-tone gunmetal case with a matte black dial, plus brushed indexes and hands filled with black Super-LumiNova®, the Abyss may not meet the usual criteria of a dive watch water-resistant to 600m; but with looks that could only be described as cool, who really cares?
To take advantage of our Black Friday saving, head over to christopherward.co.uk now. *This offer runs until midnight Monday 2 December.