Vivid. Ingenious. Sharp. Cutting Edge. Intriguing.
These are words I use to describe the newest Canadian bank notes. Canada is one of many countries that is going ”polymer”. This is a fancy way of saying they are made of plastic. Polymer notes have been around for decades now with countries from Romania to Mexico using plastic. What sets apart the Canadian notes is the design and the use of ‘windows’ and that the windows are combined with holograms.
Not only is the technology interesting, the notes have great eye appeal. The design is sharp and images vivid. The back of the ten dollar note has a train going through a mountain scape overlaid on a map of Canada. And on the five, well what says Canada better than the space program! Okay, so it is not what I think of first, but it still looks nice.
There is a continuity with the notes’ designs as well. Although the pictures change, the location of the leaf window and the main window are identical. The under print designs, although different colors, are also identical patterns. The ends of the notes have a dome design where they have magnetic strips for the vending machine world.
An added feature to Canadian notes is the use of raised dots for the visually impaired. The upper left hand corner of the note (when looking at the front) has a different number of dots for each denomination. Another feature that you may not see is the large number on the front of the note is printed with raised ink. You can feel the difference as you run your fingers over the note.
What you can’t see, and what we’ve come to expect, is plenty of microprinting. Another thing that is hard to see is the raised words and letters in the big plastic window. All these features add up to make the Canadian Polymer notes among the most advanced and hardest to counterfeit in the world.
Security is not the only driving force behind note redesign. The polymer notes last 2 – 4 times as long as paper notes. That means they have to produce a lesser quantity of notes annually. A paper note often lasts one or two years, while the plastic notes usually last 4 to 6 years. For more information you can follow this link