02. Tech components
Currency technology primarily consists of the following key components:
- Substrates (paper/ plastic)
- Inks/coatings (Offset/ Intaglio/ Letterpress / Varnish)
- Security features and authentication
Security features and authentication:
- RBI site on security features on banknote: https://www.rbi.org.in/scripts/ic_banknotessecurity.aspx
- Older RBI site with information on security features: https://www.rbi.org.in/currency/Security%20Features.html and https://www.rbi.org.in/scripts/BS_CurrencyFAQView.aspx?Id=39
Priorities for India:
- Reduced lifetime cost: (1) reduce manufacturing cost, (2) increase durability and lifetime in use
- Unique-to-India security features
- New and better security features
- Indigenous manufacturers and suppliers so as to encourage “Make in India” and improve reliability
Cost reduction priorities for sourced materials:
- Of sourced materials, security paper (~70%), Ink (~30%).
- In paper, high value security thread and watermark paper are largest cost items.
- In ink, OVI (15-20%) and intaglio ink are largest cost items.
- Most important targets: security thread, OVI, watermark paper
Cost reduction by increased durability and life:
- Key priorities are reduced soiling and increased tear resistance
- Overt or Covert
- Embedded (means embedded in paper) or thread based or ink based
- Needs to have freedom-to-operate; preferably inventive
- Components: 1) The signalling entity (taggants, chromaphores, stimuli sensitive materials etc), and 2) The detection mechanisms (authentication technologies)
How can India acquire these technologies?
- Licensing for manufacturing
- Acquisitions, tech absorption/ adaptations
- Technology development and R&D
Reference: Premnath V, “Security features and durability: Building capabilities for inventive technologies”, Conference “Make in India – Indigenisation of currency” at Vigyan Bhawan, Delhi, India on 2 June 2015.
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