Serial Number: AA 25 076298.
Polymer Dated 26 January 1988
The currency note in this folder is of an entirely new style. It was produced by the Note Printing Branch of the Reserve Bank of Australia at Craigieburn, Victoria, as a special Commemoration Issue. The note is the first of Us kind in the world, in that it is printed on polymer I plastic) incorporating technology devised and developed in Australia. Notes from the limited first print run (of which this is one) bear the prefix AA and are imprinted ’26 January 1988′. These features will distinguish them from subsequent prints of the note.
The technology embodied in the note represents the culmination of many years of joint research and development by the Reserve Bank of Australia and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation. This work has involved design, manufacture and incorporation in the note of a sophisticated optically variable device (OVD), to deter counterfeiting. The OVD. a portrait of Captain Cook, is visible from either side of the note. It diffracts light, producing a varying rainbow pattern when the viewing angle is changed. A clear portrait, and the rainbow pattern, are important security aspects of the new note. To allow the use of an OVD, a special polymer substrate was developed to replace the traditional currency note paper. The polymer, after treatment, performs comparably to paper in the printing processes. This permits the inclusion of traditional ami-counterfeiting devices based on the note printer’s skills. For instance, the intaglio printing used on the major features produces a distinct raised effect where the ink has been deposited; offset print, used for background patterns on the note, is applied to both sides at the same time, so that they are in perfect registration with each other. The watermark, usual in paper notes, has given way to the OVD. Tile note’s designer is Mr Harry Williamson, the designer of Australia’s current $100 note, aided by staff at the Bank’s Note Printing Branch. The theme of the design is settlement.
One side of the note relates to Australia’s original inhabitants. It brings together some elements of Aboriginal culture-ancient rock painting and hand stencils, a portrayal of an Aboriginal youth wearing body painting, and a Morning Star Pole. The Pole is the work of the Aboriginal artist, Yumbulul and is an example of poles used by the Aboriginal people of north-east Arnhem Land on certain ceremonial occasions. Some original works commissioned by the Bank from Aboriginal artists have been used to create background patterns.
The other side of the note shows the ship ‘Supply’ and a medley of people against a background of Sydney Cove. The ‘Supply’ and its ten sister ships of the First Fleet left Portsmouth, England, for Botany Bay on 13 May 1787. All the fleet arrived at Botany Bay by 20 January 1788 but it was regarded as unsuitable for a settlement. Six days later a settlement was established at Sydney Cove. The representation of Sydney Cove is based on an engraving of a sketch by John Hunter, an officer on the First Fleet’s flagship, ‘Sirius’, and later Governor of New South Wales.
The Commemorative Note will be printed and issued only during 1988.