TECHNOLOGY & HISTORY

A companion in
meeting challenges
for more than a century.

Determined men and women tackling
the most punishing environments to push beyond their limits.
Whether on land, sea, or air, no matter time or circumstance,
PROMASTER has backed professionals in their work with safe,
consistent support for over 30 years.
Enabling this history is over 100 years of Citizen craftsmanship DNA,
coupled with a host of advanced technologies
from successfully meeting challenges time and again.

Establishment of
Shokosha Watch
Research Institute
EPISODE 01

Founder Kamekichi Yamazaki was determined to produce watches in Japan, at a time when imports were the norm. After establishing Shokosha Watch Research Institute just outside of Tokyo, Yamazaki set up the Shokosha Watch School to train talented technicians he considered essential for creating exceptional watches. With these steps, the history of Citizen had begun.

The Parashock
Experiment
EPISODE 02

The year 1956 saw the debut of Parashock, Japan’s first wristwatch with a shock-resistance mechanism. At its heart is a structure that functions as a shock absorber when in motion, protecting the watch from impact even when dropped from high places. To demonstrate this durability, Citizen conducted tests across the country in which the watch was dropped from a helicopter 30 metres high. The Parashock concept of safeguarding against impact led directly to today's shock counteraction function, where the second hand never skips even when a Citizen watch is hit.

After crossing the ocean,
what happened to Parawater?
EPISODE 03

Since 1963, Citizen has conducted tests to have its Parawater wristwatch cross the ocean, both to demonstrate its water resistance and to carry out tidal research. In the first test conducted to cross the Pacific Ocean, 100 buoys with the wristwatch attached were launched into the ocean from ships in three waves. The buoys then rode the Kuroshio Current as part of a large-scale experiment to traverse the Pacific. To encourage international friendliness and goodwill, letters from Japanese junior high and high school students were also enclosed in some of the buoys. Three years later, in 1966, one of the buoys was found off the coast of Manzanita in the U.S. state of Oregon.
All the watches that were finally collected operated normally, and proved the Parawater's water-resistant qualities.

Titanium researchEPISODE 04

The 1960s – a decade that saw the entire world enthralled by the 'Apollo program', the manned space missions that helped put humankind on the moon. All eyes turned to lightweight, strong and rust-resistant titanium as the go-to material for work in space. Before long, the thought emerged that these properties could make titanium the ideal material for wristwatches that contact with human skin. That idea was the start of Citizen’s titanium research. In 1970, after surmounting high fabrication hurdles, Citizen finally released the “X-8” as the world’s first wristwatch with a titanium exterior. Combining the symbols used to express the unknown (“X”) and infinity (“8”), the product name, “X-8 Chronometer” embodies anticipation in the infinite possibilities of titanium as an unknown material at the time.

A pioneer
in light-powered
watches.
EPISODE 05

After being first in the world to announce a light-powered watch in 1976, Citizen has repeatedly honed development of this technology and steadily produced light-powered watches. The Eco-Drive watch, which can continue to run not only on sunlight but also on faint indoor lighting, is the first watch to completely eliminate periodic battery changes. Since 2009, annual sales of Eco-Drive-equipped watches have reached 4 million units worldwide. Put differently, if Eco-Drive did not exist, this would roughly translate into an 8,400m-high stack of waste batteries each year, almost equivalent to the height of Mt. Everest. Today, Eco-Drive technology is present in virtually the entire Citizen PROMASTER line of watches. The environmental soundness of this lineup is fitting in a sports watch for professionals so closely engaged with nature.

A watch
still kept time
after six years at sea
EPISODE 06

In 1983 a self-winding diver’s watch, considered a forerunner of the PROMASTER series, was found on Australia’s Long Reef Beach. Although the body of the watch was covered in barnacles and other matter, the internal structure was still operating normally, having quietly continued to keep time for six years while at sea.

1989
The Arrival of PROMASTER
EPISODE 07

1989 saw the arrival of the PROMASTER brand for land, sea and air professionals. Prior to that, Citizen had developed a variety of watch series embodying its “Sporté” and “Citizen Sporting Life” brand messages. In fact, the logo mark for the new PROMASTER brand featured an arrow design, signifying the concepts “go higher” and “go deeper” from these earlier brands, and a text motif based on the letters SS (for “Sporting Spirit”) associated with them. Built to meet the demands of professionals active in challenging environments, PROMASTER specs are the culmination of Citizen’s century-long commitment to overcoming the challenges of watch development.

Logo 1985
1989's logo
Logo current
new logo

Over 20 years of
Blue Angels model sales
EPISODE 08

Part of the PROMASTER series, the Blue Angels model has been sold now for over 20 years. The first model in the PROMASTER SKY series of authentic pilot watches debuted in 1989, and these watches have continued to sell for three decades.

Waterproof trial conducted by "Deepsea 6500"EPISODE 09

In developing the Eco-Drive Professional Diver 1000m, Citizen conducted a trial in collaboration with the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMTEC). Specifically, a prototype of the watch was attached to the Deepsea 6500 experiment basket to test water infiltration at depth. Results showed that the watch continued to function properly even under high water pressure, confirming that watch operation is possible at water depths well beyond 1,000 metres.

Repeat the challenge of development,
Ahead of many layers of advanced technology,
A must for adventurers who open land, sea and sky,
PROMASTER with features and performance.

We always look at the times,
Deeper, higher, more distant.

It will not change from now on,
Support universal adventure and underlying curiosity,
To continue to be an irreplaceable partner.