Ulysse Nardin Announces The New Diver Lemon Shark And An Initiative To Turn Science Fiction Into Science Fact!
In tandem with the launch of the Diver Lemon Shark, Ulysse Nardin announced partnerships with both Ocearch and FIU in the hopes of increasing and improving ocean research.
Modern industry landscapes are evolving at breakneck speeds. Just a few years ago, initiatives like company-wide sustainability efforts, eliminating carbon footprints, and generally doing good for the environment didn’t dominate conversations like they do today. Now, with consumer concerns and interests shifting, brands need to assess their priorities and act or risk becoming irrelevant.
Well, Ulysse Nardin is determined to take action. Not only has the Swiss watchmaker pledged to meet the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, but it “aims to reduce marine pollution by integrating materials culled from the ocean whenever possible,” according to a statement from the brand. And when it comes to where Ulysse Nardin is focusing its energy, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that oceans are involved.
So, in celebration of World Ocean Day (which is today), Ulysse Nardin unveiled its all-new limited-edition Diver Lemon Shark and announced partnerships with Ocearch and Florida International University (FIU) Medina Aquarius Program in the FIU Institute of Environment.
Watchonista went down to Islamorada, in the Florida Keys, to take to the waters, get an initial impression of Ulysse Nardin’s new diver, and see what this aquatic triumvirate wants to accomplish.
Introducing the Diver Lemon Shark
Unlike the much bolder and brash Diver X Skeleton, the Diver Lemon Shark takes a much different but equally successful tact: style and utility in equal parts. At 42mm, the newcomer to the Diver collection isn’t overbearing, but by no means is it a dainty timepiece. For me, the Lemon Shark falls into the “Goldilocks Zone” of case sizes, perfectly suited for everyday use, not just on dives. And inside it is the Caliber UN-816 movement with 42 hours of power reserve.
While the colorway choices are direct references to the toothy predator the watch is named after, they come together to build an easy-to-read timepiece, both above and below the surface.
The black DLC-coated steel case, concave unidirectional bezel, and black sandblasted dial under a domed sapphire glass act as the perfect backdrop for both the citrus-colored details and second hand and the light “shark gray” Super-LumiNova indices. Moreover, the tasteful color-pops and restrained neutral details over the classy black background make this timepiece incredibly versatile.
If the color references are too subtle for your liking, the caseback includes a beautifully stamped portrait of three lemon sharks. And, in line with Ulysse Nardin’s sustainability mission, the black R-STRAP is made entirely from recycled fishing nets.
Water-resistant to 300m, the Ulysse Nardin Diver Lemon Shark will be priced at $7,300 but is limited to just 300 pieces.
They Ain’t Chasin’ Blue Gills or Tommy Cats
As part of the launch of the Lemon Shark, Ulysse Nardin announced a partnership with Ocearch, an organization hellbent on changing the way the science community researches and shares data learned from studying sharks.
Currently, there’s one ship and crew studying white sharks in the east Atlantic, but speaking with Chris Fischer, Ocearch Founder and Expedition Leader, it was clear why Ulysse Nardin decided to team up with the organization. His passion for the ocean isn’t restricted merely to sharks.
“We’re trying to make sure the ocean is full of fish for our grandkids. The white sharks are the wolves, the lions, the balance keepers of their ecosystems.” Fischer continued, “That’s why we’re working with them. If we don’t have these large sharks, the second-tier of the food chain explodes and wipes out the whole system below them.”
Hollywood would have you believe white sharks are mindless killing machines, but Fischer has hard data that proves otherwise.
“One shark we’re tracking right now is off the coast of Cape Cod, and when she’s swimming up and down the beach, every single one of the seals in the area eats one-fourth as much food every day,” said Fischer.
“They don’t want to risk it and will stay out of the water until they’re almost starving,” Fischer added. “When the sharks aren’t there, the seals eat four times as much, including lobster, cod, stripers, everything.”
More importantly, however, is Ocearch’s mission to democratize science and data. “We need a new type of environmental leadership that’s centrist and inclusive, not the current ivory tower program,” said Fischer.
Fischer lamented the archaic ways of the scientific community working against one another in silos, competing for grants, trying to defeat each other in a “publish or perish” mentality.
“Competing for traditional grants isn’t efficient,” Fischer explained. “We’ve had the luxury of working with brands like Ulysse Nardin because they provide the resources and funding explicitly to help us collect and share the data. Our aim is to disrupt the old ways of oceanic research and put the ocean first.”
The Real Sealab 2021
As part of the field test for the Lemon Shark Diver, we took a day trip out on the water to see first-hand the FIU Aquarius Reef Base. About 60 feet below the surface, the underwater habitat acts as a crucial tool for FIU in studying the ocean and its wildlife.
FIU Dean Michael Heithaus was there to talk with us about why the Aquarius is a gem of the scientific community. As the university and scientists use the Aquarius to study life under water, they also share the experience. And not just in scientific reports and journals. They’ve reached out to public schools and broadcasted live feeds of the scientists working in the habitat.
“The great thing about the way the University operates is it’s not an ivory tower,” said Heithaus. In that regard, his mentality doesn’t differ much from Fischer’s.
Continuing, Heithaus added, “We’re all about the positive impact we can have locally and around the world. Part of that impact is making sure we have healthy oceans and leave better oceans for the next generation.”
For Ulysse Nardin, Ocearch, and FIU, there’s a common passion and love for the ocean and a desire to shepherd it into the future. For each of the three organizations, it’s about inspiring the next generation. The goal here isn’t personal gratification; it’s to educate and inspire the next generation of scientists to pick up the mantle and carry the torch.
For more information, visit Ulysse Nardin’s website or check out this short documentary film about the new watch and the work being done by FIU and Ocearch:
(Photography by Watchonista)