Coming to a $100 Bill: 3D Technology

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The new 3D $100 bill

U.S. Treasury

Ooh, look at you with your $100 bill. Let’s take a closer look: Benjamin Franklin? Check. Official stamp of the Federal Reserve System? You better believe it. 3D Security Ribbon? What the wha?

This past Wednesday will go down as a watershed day for watermarks, as the Treasury unveiled the fancy new $100 bill. It’s going to be harder for criminals to copy the distinctive design.

(See pictures of the dangers of printing money.)

“As with previous U.S. currency redesigns, this note incorporates the best technology available to ensure we’re staying ahead of counterfeiters,” Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said in a statement. But to break that down, we think he’s referring to the blue “3D Security Ribbon,” which will appear on the front of the notes that are going into circulation from February.

(See more on 3D movies.)

The strip contains a sequence of images of bells and digits and if you tip the note, the 3D element kicks in, though apparently there’s no need for glasses. “It only takes a few seconds to check the new $100 note and know it’s real,” said Larry R. Felix, Director of the Treasury’s Bureau of Engraving and Printing. That’s all well and good but if 3D movie tickets keep rocketing up in price, the new 3D $100 bill isn’t going to be able to pay for much more than a family of four, and perhaps some popcorn and soda if you’re lucky. (via the Christian Science Monitor)