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November 19, 2011 / Raffy Pekson II

Canada’s New Plastic 100 Dollar Bill

Canada's new polymer $100 bill is unveiled at the Atlantica Hotel in Halifax.

The polymer-blend bills have a number of advantages over the old paper-and-cotton ones. One key difference is that they are more difficult to counterfeit. And they won’t disintegrate if you accidentally run them through the washing machine. The plastic bills are more secure, more economical and better for the environment, according to the Bank of Canada. The downside of the polymer notes is that they are more slippery and can’t be folded.

Bank of Canada reports that the polypropylene substrate lasts 2.5 times longer and makes it harder to copy than the existing paper-cotton money. It marks the first full-scale use of a substrate other than paper for Canada’s currency. The two-windowed $100 note enters circulation in November and celebrates Canadian contributions to science. Aside from images of DNA, an ECG, insulin, and a researcher using a microscope, it has two portraits of Prime Minister Robert Borden. One is a unique holographic likeness set in a clear plastic window that changes colors with the viewing angle.

Polymer notes in all five denominations are to be released in stages over the next two years, with the $50 bill scheduled for March, Bank of Canada officials said. They are the same size as existing notes and the same dominant colour in each of the $100, $50, $20, $10 and $5 denominations. The incorporated advanced security features are:

  • Raised ink can be felt on the large “100” numeral and Sir Robert’s shoulders;
  • A see-through window runs vertically to the right of Sir Robert’s portrait on the face side.
  • A metallic portrait of Sir Robert and a picture of part of the Parliament buildings embedded in the window can be seen equally from the face and reverse sides of the bill;
  • Translucent text also appears in the window;
  • A series of maple leaves of different sizes frame parts of the window;
  • A frosted maple leaf window appears to the left of the main Sir Robert portrait;
  • Hidden numbers in the maple leaf window can be viewed by holding the window to a bright light.

Here’s a Bank of Canada official YouTube video introducing the new $100 polymer note.

Sources: MSN Money | Toronto Star | Bank of Canada | CNet

Photo by bigasssuperstar at Flickr.com

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8 Comments

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  1. jmintuck / Dec 1 2011 8:48 pm

    Just got this note to buy presents for mom and dad and something for my sis all from my brother. He showed it to me and I nearly DIED when I saw this beautiful 100 dollar bill of Canada. I couldn’t believe that Canada is seemingly the first in the World to come up with transparent windowed bills. I can’t wait for the 10’s 20’s and 5’s to be made. These will be gorgeous. I cannot believe that the USA has not made too much difference in their bills. Hmm, you would think, though.

    • Smokey / Jan 29 2012 9:16 pm

      First in the world?
      Last i checked, New Zealand and Australian Currency notes have had windowed/polymer notes in circulation for close to, if not longer than 10 years, they are longer lasting, harder to forge, and don’t get ruined in the wash/wallet or money bin, they are very washable, just don’t iron them (leave them in shirt pockets and iron the shirt) they have a tendancy to melt

  2. Robin Jane McNichol / Dec 16 2011 1:59 am

    I just got my first high-tech $100. Canadian bill today…and I must say Americans never entered my consciousness! We are so clever! Not sure why someone said they can’t be folded tho’? It says they are water proof…but how about flammable? At what point do they burst into flames? or Do they simply melt at high temperatures?

    • Lyndsay / Jan 10 2012 10:55 pm

      actually i had a patient (as i work in a dental office) tell me that her nephew had put a couple hundreds in a metal tin (where he usually keeps his $ locked away) and they melted inside the tin and were stuck to the bottom. ..

      I wouldn’t be happy that my money was now unusable …

  3. john / Apr 10 2012 12:27 pm

    im from philippines and i got 5 of them its so nice but i cant see the hidden number on the frosted maple leaf which can be seen when a single light point source put on the small window

  4. le referencement naturel / Jul 27 2013 2:35 am

    Thanks for any other fantastic post. Where else may anybody get that kind
    of information in such an ideal way of writing?
    I have a presentation next week, and I am at the look for such information.

  5. Brenda Tenold / Oct 6 2013 9:28 pm

    Was the picture of the woman changed and if so, are the original $100’s with the Asian woman worth more as collector items.

  6. Tesha / Oct 8 2014 12:11 pm

    Hello just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let
    you know a few of the images aren’t loading correctly.
    I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different web browsers and both show the same outcome.

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