Quartz watches: device, components and operating principle

June 8, 2018

Over the past few centuries, electricity has become more firmly entrenched in human life, of course, that it affected many areas of life and activity, including watchmaking. At first, mechanical watches appeared, which were very precise, but difficult to manufacture and quite expensive. The perfect alternative was the appearance of quartz watches, which have the same accuracy, but are available to absolutely everyone. Let's try to figure out how the quartz watch works and how they work.

Main components of quartz watches

These watches are named so thanks to the crystal of quartz, which is the source of the oscillation. With its help provides greater stability of pulses, and therefore, and greater accuracy of the stroke. An electric field is produced by the crystal, but if subjected to an electric current, the crystal will contract, that is, it can be made to oscillate, all crystals differing in the resonance frequency. The ideal oscillation frequency is 32 768 Hz.

The main elements of the quartz watches are the stepper motor and the electronic unit, the motor rotates the arrows, and the unit sends it a pulse once a second. The battery that feeds both these components usually works for several years, which allows you to forget that you need to wind up the watches, throughout this time. Therefore, quartz watches are a unique combination of convenience in use and a high level of accuracy.

Composition of the electronic unit and stepper motor

In quartz watches an electronic unit consists of two parts - a generator and a divider. The generator generates electric oscillations, stabilized with the aid of a quartz crystal at its frequency. As a result, we obtain a generator of electric oscillations of stable frequency.

Per second, the oscillator generates 32,768 oscillations, which is more than the number of oscillations in a conventional clock of approximately 10,000 times - mechanical devices simply can not perform work at this speed. The second part of the electronic unit, the divider, is designed to convert these oscillations into electric pulses of frequency 1 Hz, which are then fed to the winding of the stepping electric motor.

As for the engine, its components are a stator, a coil with a winding that is fixed on it, and a rotor, which is a permanent magnet on the axis. When a pulse passes through the coil, a magnetic field is created that rotates the rotor half a turn, which rotates the arrows through the gear system.

Service life of quartz watch

When buying a watches, the natural question arises: how long will they last? Hypothetically, a good quartz watch should not be inferior to a mechanical watch in the matter of durability. The wheel mechanism and the stepping motor will serve for a long time, you only need to change the battery every few years. The exact statistics are not yet available, because there were quartz watches only 40 years ago, but many such hours go so far.

Today, there are many different and modern models of quartz watches, both male and female, so everyone can choose for themselves what will be ideal for him.

Appearance and additional functions

The dial with arrows can be considered a classic option, but sometimes a digital display is also used. Such watches are called quartz ones with digital indication, which emphasizes the fact that the watch's base is a quartz oscillator, and the time information is shown on the screen in the form of figures. Among other things, you can program the chip in a special way and get a stopwatch, an alarm clock, a chronograph and so on instead of the usual clock.