How the Quartz Movement Works

As the newest high-tech mechanical device, the "quartz watch" enters the market during the 1970s. In the initial stage, quartz watches were equipped with red LED displays. In the United States, such a watch was priced at $500 at that time. And both LCD and a traditional mechanical movement can be applied to display the time. From then on, the quartz watch has emerged and gradually accepted by the market. Especially, the price of quartz watch becomes substantially lower.

Due to the force of gravity, a mechanical watch tells time differently at high altitudes from at sea level. As for the pendulum clock, its accuracy will be influenced by the temperature of the surrounding environment. Pendulums would expand slightly on warm days and contract on cold days.

However, the operation of the quartz watch is not affected by these factors. They are battery powered so that their accuracy is not influenced by gravity and temperature. No matter which altitude you are at, quartz watch tells the same time all the time. Generally, the battery needs to be replaced every few years. Thus, quartz watches are also much more accurate than pendulum clocks. The working principle of a quartz watch is different from ordinary watches’.

Although gears inside quartz watch are used to count the seconds, minutes, and hours and sweep the hands around the dial, they are controlled by a tiny crystal of quartz serving as the swinging pendulum’s counterpart. Quartz movement uses a battery that sends an electrical signal through a piece of crystal quartz to keep accurate time. Little quartz oscillator is also involved inside the quartz watch.

Quartz is one of the typical minerals on Earth definitely, which is made from silicon dioxide, a chemical compound. Piezoelectric characteristics lead the quartz crystal to have more common applications in everyday electronic devices. Piezoelectricity means electricity resulting from pressure and latent heat. (Piezoelectric Effect is the ability of certain materials to generate an electric charge in response to applied mechanical stress.) Therefore, an electric voltage can be obtained by squeezing a quartz crystal. And if a piece of quartz is allowed to get a voltage, it will vibrate back and forth at a precise frequency.

Electricity is sent to the quartz crystal inside the watch through an electronic circuit. The quartz vibrates 32768 times per second, creating a signal precisely. The vibrations are measured by the circuit and converted into regular electric pulses every second. Electric pulses are passed to a magnetic coil and generate the magnetic field which is dominant in physical movement and rotation of gears. These pulses can not only move gear wheels that rotate the watch’s second, minute, and hour hands but also power an LCD display for displaying the time digitally or numerically. Like NAVIFORCE quartz watches with double movement, you can get the time through analog and digital display. Consequently, the quartz movement serves as a critical component to help the watch to tell the time.


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