The gold-plated timepiece, which is 1.5 metres across, was officially unveiled at Corpus Christi College by Stephen Hawking, the city’s World-famous maths professor.
The mechanical clock has been designed and paid for by Dr John Taylor, an honorary fellow at the college, and it has pride of place on the college’s new library, which is also funded by him.
The clock is powered by a pendulum, driven by a mechanism in the shape of a giant grasshopper.
The grasshopper was sculpted by Cambridge-based artist, Matthew Lane Sanderson, and the whole timepiece was put together by Huxley Bertram Engineering at Cottenham.
It has no hands or digital numerals. Instead there is a series of slits cut into the face, and blue LED lights are arranged behind the slits, which run round rapidly in concentric circles and pause at the correct hour, minute, and second. Its massive round face was engineered from a single sheet of stainless steel, and gold-plated by BJS Gold.